On Sunday, September 18, members of Visual Resistance created and installed a ghost bike memorial for Jen Shao, a 65-year old grandmother killed by a hit-and-run driver in the financial district last Friday morning. Ms. Shao was struck by a charter bus while attempting to turn from Governeur Lane onto Water St., a busy two-way street with no bike lane. The driver never stopped; police are classifying this as a hit-and-run, a potential felony.
Creating and installing ghost bikes is a sad and moving process. The death of a fellow bicyclist hits home, since we travel the same unsafe streets and face the same risks; it could just as easily be one of us. At Governeur and Water St. on Sunday afternoon, a collection of flowers and candles was laid out along with photographs and notes from neighbors and friends. We locked a bike painted white and bolted a small memorial plaque to a signpost as the cars continued to speed by. A biker and several pedestrians stopped and stood with us for a few moments.
The installation is intended as a reminder of the tragedy that took place on Friday, September 16th at this lonely corner in the financial district, and as a quiet statement in support of bikers' right to safe travel. Previous memorials have been installed for Elizabeth Padilla, Andrew Ross Morgan, and Brandie Bailey. Our hearts go out to their friends and families.
Each time we say we hope to never have to do it again --- but we remain comitted to making these memorials as long as they are needed.
See all the ghost bikes.