`GHOST BIKE' COMMEMORATES CYCLIST, RAISES AWARENESS
Nearly 200 cyclists and friends made a procession along Taylor-kidd Boulevard in Kingston on Sunday afternoon to mark the death of a local cyclist.
Patrick Lynch died on Nov. 12 on his Brompton foldable bike after coming in contact with a vehicle on Kingston's west end on Taylor-kidd Boulevard, just west of Collins Bay Road.
In the days following his death, those closest to him remembered him to the Whig-standard as a well-loved father and friend, an adventurous traveller and an avid cyclist.
More than 120 cycling members of the Kingston Velo Club, to which Lynch belonged, assembled behind a Kingston Police escort to transport a “ghost bicycle” — painted fully white — to where it would be chained to a hydro pole near the site of Lynch's accident.
Another several dozen walkers made their way along the same route.
Nico Barbe is a board member of the Kingston Velo Club and director for outreach and advocacy for the club.
“Patrick was one of our ride leaders,” Barbe said as the assembled cyclists prepared to ride out from Bayridge Secondary School. “I think we were all deeply touched by what happened, just because he was such a kind, friendly person.”
Carole Russell said the ghost bike procession served a twofold purpose.
“It's a tribute to Patrick and to commemorate and remember what a great cyclist and part of our community he was,” Carole Russell, Kingston Velo Club president, said on Sunday. “The second part is to raise some level of awareness to cycling, particularly in Kingston, but really anywhere. Just to raise community awareness that we're out there and we use the road. We want to be safe.”
The “ghost bike” — which was hauled behind a cyclist in the procession on a small bike trailer — will be a visual reminder of the loss of a member of the Kingston cycling community, Russell said.
“The concept is that there was someone who was a cyclist, and that person is no longer with us and will never cycle again. … It's just obviously very symbolic to draw attention to the fact that something very tragic has happened,” she said.
To the nearly 200 assembled on Sunday afternoon, as the ghost bike was being chained to a pole in a rural section of Taylor-kidd Boulevard, Russell said Lynch was a skilled cyclist who loved adventure.
“His exuberance for life was truly contagious,” she said to the crowd. “Patrick was loved by everybody who knew him.”
Kingston Police were unable to provide an update on the case Monday afternoon.