In the past few years, CiclaValley has become one of the leading voices for bike advocacy in the LA area, with a focus on the San Fernando Valley. Today he offers a guest post on next week’s Ride of Silence to remember fallen bike riders.
Cycling is a community.
It doesn’t matter how fast you ride, what bike you have or how often you do it. You have a connection knowing that your fellow cyclists share the same joys and anxieties as you.
When news breaks that cyclist has lost their life, you can’t help but think about what that person left behind. Family. Friends. Even children. It is a perilous world, but one where we can use these tragedies to teach us how to live.
Last year, I attended my first Ride of Silence in Pasadena. I had no idea what to expect or how many people would be there, I just thought it was important to go to show my dedication to this community.
There were at least one hundred riders on hand, but what was more powerful than our size was the symbolism coming from riding together in absolute silence. Riding down Colorado Blvd., people took notice not only of our large group, but also the message we were sending without any sound.
I knew from that day one year ago that the San Fernando Valley, with over 1.8 million residents, needed a ride of our own. As I continued my preparations for the ride with LACBC, my planning changed when in early April, Cairo Castaneda lost his life in Studio City at an intersection that is very familiar to me. Danny Gamboa of Ghost Bikes came to place the memorial and since that time, people have continued to pay their respects by adding details making it a beautiful shrine.
This ride will now quietly roll by this site.
The goal is to spread the Ride of Silence, not just to the valley, but countywide as well.
Please come out to support our ride in North Hollywood next Wednesday night on May 18th. It meets at the North Hollywood Red Line Station at 6:30 p.m. If you cannot make it out into the valley, Pasadena’s ride will be meeting the same evening at the Rose Bowl, and you’ll also find other rides in Orange County, Thousand Oaks and Oxnard.
Cycling is a great community because we care about each other. Let’s show everyone else as well.
CiclaValley mentioned other RoS in Southern California.
You can find all the OC rides on Bill Sellin’s site, including rides in Fullerton, Huntington Beach, Orange and Santa Ana; information on the Oxnard ride can be found here, and Thousand Oaks here.
I’ve long had a vision for a Ride of Silence down Wilshire Blvd from Santa Monica to Beverly Hills. Maybe one day we’ll be able to make it happen.
My wife and I have ridden in two Ride of Silence events on our tandem. As CiclaValley mentioned, both moving experiences.
We plan to ride again this year, probably in Irvine or Fullerton.
The silence is profound.
Correction: “…both WERE moving experiences.”