Ghost Bike Honors Fallen Cyclists

Friday, June 12th 2009, 5:08 pm
By: News On 6

By Tara Vreeland, The News On 6

SAND SPRINGS, OK -- It is not unusual to see memorials on roadways marking the place where someone tragically lost their life.  Now, a memorial of a different kind sits alongside Highway 51 in Sand Springs where two bikers were hit and killed on Tuesday.  It's called a ghost bike.

It is a somber reminder on the side of the road, an informal memorial marking the scene of a crash where two bicyclists were killed.

"I wanted to pay respects to Christa Voss and Matthew Edmonds," said Trevor Harrison.

Ghost bikes are painted all white.

"I just wanted to raise awareness that cyclists have every right on the road as motorists and it's important to respect each other and watch out for each other," said Trevor Harrison.

Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers say bicyclists Christa Voss, Matthew Edmonds, and John Moore were riding on the shoulder of the highway on Tuesday when they were struck by an SUV. Voss and Edmonds were killed.

"When I first heard about it, I felt a lot of grief and outrage especially as a cyclist," said Trevor Harrison.

The driver of the SUV, Tausha Borland, faces two first degree manslaughter charges.  She is currently free on a $100,000 bond.

The trooper who investigated the accident said he detected a very strong odor of alcohol on her moments after the wreck.

"The roads are used to get around. It's not to be partying on," said Trevor Harrison.  "If you are going to be imbibing yourself there's no reason for you to operate a motor vehicle or a bicycle for that matter."

Harrison and his friends, Steve Monroe and John Carlisle say their independent decision to put the ghost bike at the memorial site isn't about them. It's a quiet statement in support of cyclists' right to safe travel.     

Christa Voss's funeral will be held on Saturday morning at 10 at the Mowery Funeral Service Chapel in Owasso.  Voss, 33, was an assistant professor of biology at Tulsa Community College.    

Matthew Edmonds, 34, will be remembered in a memorial service at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Living Word Christian Center River Valley in Alma, Arkansas.  He worked as a geologist.