SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Bike SLO County has placed a "Ghost Bike" on Foothill Boulevard in San Luis Obispo as a memorial to former Cal Poly student and cyclist Kennedy Love.
Love was hit and killed while riding his bike Tuesday by a 17-year-old DUI driver who drove away from the accident.
"This is not a happy thing, but we're happy to be able to represent him this way," says Audrey Surprenant, Women's Program Director for Bike SLO County. "It serves as a reminder for everyone to be aware of cyclists and it's a reminder for cyclists as well. We need to be aware we're in danger at all times on the road."
Installation of the painted white bike was coordinated with the City of San Luis Obispo, who issued the necessary encroachment permit to the local nonprofit.
The tribute is expected to remain for an initial period of two months, at which time the city will review the permit and any impacts on the area.
The first ghost bikes were created in St. Louis, Missouri in 2003. Currently there are over 630 ghost bikes that have since appeared in over 210 locations throughout the world.
“Every time these avoidable crashes occur, the entire community, people who bike, people who drive, pedestrians, everyone, feels the same frustration and sadness,” said Bike SLO County Executive Director Mike Bennett.
“It’s tragic and unacceptable to see yet another young person, Kennedy Love, lose the promising life he had ahead of him because someone decided to drink and drive,” Bennett said.