Thank you for a huge demonstration of community support tonight for Lance David, and for safe streets. Scores of people from all over West Seattle and the rest of the city rode with us. Mayor McGinn. Council Member Tom Rasmussen. SDOT Traffic Engineer Donho Chang. Port of Seattle Government Affairs Director Mike Merritt. Madi Carlson her two kids rode the long pink bike from Ballard. Millie Magner from Magnolia. Cathy Tuttle from Wallingford. Jerry Retzlaff from Wedgewood. Barbara Gordon from Eastlake. Robin Randels from Cascade Bicycle Club. Friends from Beacon Hill. Jake Vanderplas organized and moderated this event, with support and guidance from Cathy Tuttle of Seattle Neighborhood Greenways. Dongho Chang and I spoke at the start of the ride at Seacrest Park. Jodi Connolly spoke from the heart at the crash site about Lance David in a way that will keep his name with us forever. His name is Lance David.
my words from tonight (and I hope Jodi will share hers, for those who could not be there):
We are here to pay our respects to the memory and family of Lance David.
I will never forget coming across that crash scene, 45 minutes after it happened. His body was under a blanket out in the street, behind crime scene tape. No one was standing or kneeling with him. It seemed so lonely and disrespectful.
So we are here, to pay respect.
We are here to pay respect for Lance David as his co-workers did last Friday, and his riding buddies did on Sunday.
We respect him as a son, as our brother. We respect him as a husband, as a father of two children, working to support them. We respect him as a responsible, experienced cyclist.
Lance David demonstrated commitment to his family and his work. He demonstrated commitment to leading a healthy life. He demonstrated commitment to our community and our environment by choosing to commute by bike from Federal Way to downtown as often as he could.
So we are here to demonstrate.
We are here to demonstrate that we care about Lance David and his family.
We are here to demonstrate the need for safe streets for our children to walk and ride on, for their health and for our community.
We are here to demonstrate the need for safe routes to work for our children’s moms and dads, so they can make it home safely every day.
David Lance worked in the freight shipping industry, just like the truck drivers here. It is not “us” against “them”. It is all “us”. We all want to share the road safely. The port truck drivers do watch out for us and treat us courteously, but these intersections are not designed or maintained to allow us to safely co-exist. We need a safe crossing and a separated cycle track. We need decent pavement so we can focus on traffic, not on potholes and gravel.
We have good people at the SDOT, at the Port, in City Council, and in our Mayor, who care about this. But this City and State are not allocating the resources needed to make walking and biking safe in our lifetimes. So we want our elected officials and fellow citizens to demonstrate the same level of commitment that Lance David did.
We are putting our lives on the line to make bike transportation safe and efficient and enjoyable, to build a better community for all of us, including truck drivers and car drivers and people who can neither ride or drive themselves. We will make this route safer, or die trying.
Don Brubeck, President, West Seattle Bike Connections