Many of us have seen roadside flowers and crosses memorializing the site of an auto accident. In my travels I’ve seen far too many of them. Each time I wonder about who and how. Was it a family? A carload of teens? Was alcohol involved? Drugs? Speed? I imagine a terrible hole in the lives of a family.
Walking along a cycling/walking path in Albuquerque, I came upon a different sort of memorial at an intersection where a bike path crosses a 40 mph 4-lane street.
A ghost bike.
Two things I knew: Roy Sekreta was dead by auto in the prime of his life. And some people cared about him. Cared enough to get a bike frame and paint it white: spokes, chain, everything. Artificial flowers were attached. The cyclist’s name was painted on the top tube and the years spanning his life on the down tube.
I googled Roy Sekreta and learned that this was one of three ghost bikes in Albuquerque, and the notion of memorializing cyclists at dangerous intersections was not a new idea.
In fact, it began in San Francisco in 2002 and has spread to St Louis, New York, Seattle, London, Berlin, and dozens more cities.
Roy Sekreta and other dead cyclists continue to make a difference by reminding motorists and cyclists alike to pay attention, be cautious, and be aware.