The Chainlink

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This is my everyday route to work during rush hour.  I rolled by this morning just after it had happened, just before the EMT's had put a sheet over him.  The most awful thing I've ever seen. 

 Bike lanes can't protect us, drivers can't be relied upon to see us or think of us. We need to band together and protect each other. Whenever there are five or six of us at a red light, we need to mob up and take the lane. Nobody left behind.

Thanks, Trevor.

If there is an opportune moment to do so, can you please find out if friends/family would be OK with a ghost bike at the site?

Trevor said:

Yeah, I sent the info to a couple of his friends and coworkers, I think they'll circulate as much as they can.


h' said:

Can you let his friends/family/coworkers know about the vigil tonight at 9? 

Trevor said:

I'm not sure if Neil was a chainlink member, but he was a really nice guy.  He was on his way to work on W. Fulton Market this morning.  He didn't show up on time and didn't respond to text messages, unusual for him.  Police showed up at his office to let people know what had happened.  This is incredibly sad, and I know at least one of his coworkers who rode into work today was too shaken to ride home.  My thoughts are with Neil's family and friends.

Kevin C said:

Updated Tribune story identifies the victim as Neil Townsend.

Now that I have time to review this thread fully-- wondering if Chris (OP) might consider changing the subject line to include Neill's name-- friends/loved ones do Google in these situations and in this case it would be great for them to see how many people care about this and that so many people's thoughts are with them.

Also-- big thanks to Ethan for being where and when he needed to be; I can't think of a better person to be the face and the voice of more vulnerable traffic participants, as draining as it must be in a situation like this.

+1

h' said:

Now that I have time to review this thread fully-- wondering if Chris (OP) might consider changing the subject line to include Neill's name-- friends/loved ones do Google in these situations and in this case it would be great for them to see how many people care about this and that so many people's thoughts are with them.

Also-- big thanks to Ethan for being where and when he needed to be; I can't think of a better person to be the face and the voice of more vulnerable traffic participants, as draining as it must be in a situation like this.

This is my everyday route and I'm planning on leaving for work early every day next week to try to form mini-masses at the red lights where several of us take up a lane.  Doing something positive at the site will surely help me get through this piece of street, and I'm sure the other Wells St. commuters will benefit as well.  

Commuters tend to fall into two blocks--8am people and 9am people.  Starting something early or holding two meetups will cover more commuters.



Sarah D. said:

I think this would be great, too. I'm in if we can get something together - maybe next Friday morning during the commute time? It would keep a focus on the seriousness of the issue, and educate drivers. Any weekday would work, just thought marking the day on which it happened might be nice. 

Melissa, would you want to set something up? Would those who rode to the vigil this evening come back? 


Kristy Lapidus said:

I agree Melissa.

Melissa M said:

Might it also be a good idea to gather for a memorial on a weekday morning around the time that it occurred? We could wear white shirts and gather (on the sidewalk?) at the site. It just seems like being there at the time when the area is busiest is a good time to remind people to check for cyclists (and other traffic) before opening their doors.

Yes, please Chris (OP) change the subject line.  I googled Mr. Townsend's name and got this.

http://truenewsusa.blogspot.com/2012/10/attorney-neill-townsend-sav...

What has happened to us that someone would write something like this?????

h' said:

Now that I have time to review this thread fully-- wondering if Chris (OP) might consider changing the subject line to include Neill's name-- friends/loved ones do Google in these situations and in this case it would be great for them to see how many people care about this and that so many people's thoughts are with them.

Haters gonna hate.

:(

-jbn


Michelle Gregorek said:

What has happened to us that someone would write something like this?????

I started to read that article, but i was almost instantly sickened. Nihilistic blather, but no surprise, really. i wonder what's worse-the people who write such trash, or the people who get off reading it.

Not funny. Not clever. Bad karma all 'round.

i didn't know Mr. Townsend, and i don't ride in that part of town, but i am very rattled by the news of his death and i mourn the man. This is the sort of thing that could happen to any of us, and makes one think twice before rolling out. But i think that he would want us to keep riding.

Michelle Gregorek said:

What has happened to us that someone would write something like this?????

h' said:

Seems like it is gone already...

Yes it is gone.  So relieved that it is gone. 

James BlackHeron said:

Seems like it is gone already...

The jerk pulled the page, but the image is still hosted at the site. You can still do a Google Image Search with his name and find it.  It's pretty darn disgusting.

Humans gonna hate. 

My sympathy to the family, friends, and work colleagues of Neil.  This is a tragedy that can happen to any of us.  In his honor, let's work together to make the streets safer for everyone by raising awareness and making the city more bike friendly.  I suspect we may be able to get Mayor Rahm to help out.

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