Seventy-five years ago today, my dad was on his fifth day in France, after landing in Normandy on D-Day+3.
That is, three days after the bloody landing on Normandy Beach that marked the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany.
He was lucky that, as an MP, he was stationed mostly behind the front lines.
Mostly being the key word.
No so for the men of the 390th Bomber Group stationed in Suffolk, England.
David Drexler reports how they relied on bikes when they weren’t in the skies over Germany.
I am recently back from my trip to Tucson, Arizona.
In Tucson is the Pima Air and Space Museum — a phenomenal place — the Smithsonian of the West for Air History.
There is a special Hanger for the 390th Bombing Group who are alleged to have been instrumental in winning WWII:
“In the spring of 1943, the 390th Bomb Group was activated in Blythe, California with four squadrons: the 568th, 569th, 570th, and 571st. In July, the Group’s air and ground troops were assigned to the 8th Air Force and dispatched to Suffolk, England for missions over Europe. The 390th’s B-17 Flying Fortresses bombed aircraft factories, bridges and oil refineries. A total of 714 airmen sacrificed their lives in the cause of freedom.”
Part of the 390th Museum is a tribute to the importance of the bicycle in WWII along with an actual bicycle that was used in England during the War.
I like the Brooks Seat — not a lot has changed in 75 years for Brooks.
I’m always struck by just how young the men and women we sent to war were, a bunch of kids who literally saved the world.
And just how many never returned.
So much for Vision Zero.
Streetsblog reports that states are responding to a new federal government program to cut traffic deaths by projecting an increase instead.
Including right here in the late, great Golden State, where state officials say efforts to improve safety will result in an increase of 412 deaths a year, on top of the state’s already too high carnage on the streets.
Never mind that the projections are supposed to be aspirational, and attainable.
In that case, why stop at 412? California can easily attain even more blood on the streets just by doing what we’re already doing right now.
That’s something to aspire to, right?
Prices just jumped for one leading brand of dockless ebikes and scooters.
Starting tomorrow, prices for rides on LA's Jump bikes are doubling, from $.15 to $.30 per minute. Haven't seen any similar announcements for Uber's cars, but more rate hikes are expected as these services attempt to become profitable post-IPO https://t.co/6YG1Lzj2CC pic.twitter.com/Dq9lBjl27H
— Alissa Walker (@awalkerinLA) June 13, 2019
Brandi DAmore forwards Bike Index’s take on that stolen bike they helped recover 12 years after it went missing.
BIKE INDEX RECOVERS A BIKE STOLEN 12 YEARS AGO
|“No one knows what use the bike performed during the years it was missing but, 12 years later, its new mission is to transport my son to perform some very important work.”
This might be a new record. 12 years after its theft in Iowa City, a bike has returned to its owner thanks to Bike Index. Picking up right where he left off, the bike’s owner now uses it to commute around Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago where he works. Bike Index has recovered over $8 million in stolen bikes. Make sure your bike has the best chance of returning to you if it’s stolen – register your bike on BIke Index right now.
Metro hosts another of their BEST Rides tomorrow, along with People for Mobility Justice and TRUST South LA, as they celebrate Juneteenth by visiting venues along Central Ave from the legendary Green Book, which lists motels and other sites where blacks were welcome during America’s more openly racist past.
The Long Beach Post profiles the owner of the New York-based Propel ebike shop, which is opening its second location on Broadway in Long Beach. Someone tell him they need to advertise here on BikinginLA. No, go ahead, I’ll wait.
The California Senate Transportation Committee met to discuss a number of bills, including improving bike lane guidance at intersections. Meanwhile, Active SGV offers an update on the bills they currently support in the legislature.
San Diego’s Blind Stoker’s Club enables visually impaired bike riders to pedal throughout the county on the back of a tandem, with a sighted rider up front.
Sports Illustrated says we never really knew NFL star Kellen Winslow II, following his conviction for rape and indecent exposure in San Diego; he was caught in part by Strava data that put his bike near one of the assaults.
Sad news from Lake Elsinore, where a 19-year old man was killed riding his skateboard in a Lake Elsinore bike lane. Evidently, painted bike lanes aren’t any safer for people on skateboards than they are for people on bikes.
An 81-year old ‘bent rider has filed suit against the San Luis Obispo County, the county airport, Caltrans and the FAA after a gust of jet blast allegedly knocked him off his bike and into traffic, resulting in severe injuries and damage to his bike.
San Raphael has opened a new bike and pedestrian bridge across a canal.
A local paper offers more on the life and death of famed Petaluma bespoke framebuilder Bruce Gordon.
A Redding woman repeatedly stabbed a man, leaving him with life-threatening injuries, then calmly rode off on her cruiser bike.
Bike Snob confesses to riding on the sidewalk with his kids. And says if your city is “plagued by those pesky sidewalk cyclists,” it means its bike infrastructure totally sucks.
Tesla’s new Enhanced Summon feature allows the car to maneuver out of parking spots and come to the driver, instead of the other way around. So who cares if it can’t recognize narrow objects like people on bicycles?
Three groups of riders from my college fraternity will set out from Santa Monica, San Francisco and Seattle to ride across the US this summer, and raise three-quarter of a million dollars for disability awareness.
Bicycling’s Selene Yeager offers tips to build up the strength you need to ride hills. I learned to conquer hills by riding up the steepest one I could find as far as I could go, then coming back the next day and doing it again, going a little further each time until I could ride it without stopping.
Your next ebike could charge itself as you ride, giving you almost unlimited range.
Oregon is moving forward with their version of an Idaho Stop law, allowing riders to treat stop signs as yields, but still stopping for red lights.
Seattle sort of responds to complaints from bicyclists about cuts to the city’s new bike plan, but not really.
Once ski season is over, Aspen CO turns to thoughts of singletrack.
A Denver bike shop gave a new bicycle to a little girl, after a TV station aired a story about the girl selling lemonade to replace her stolen bike.
That’s more like it. A new ordinance in Wichita Falls TX requires drivers to change lanes to pass vulnerable road users, including bike riders, or slow 20 mph below the speed limit to pass.
Sounds like fun. An annual Milwaukee bike ride celebrates both Mexican and Polish culture with a rolling norteña and polka party.
After St. Paul MN police were unable to recover a teenage boy’s stolen bike, despite arresting the thief, they replaced it through a program designed to do exactly that.
A local paper says a South Bend IN bike delivery rider for Jimmy John’s isn’t about to put on the brakes. Not that his bike has any.
That’s more like it too. A Maine bike coalition reminds drivers that state law allows bicyclists to ride anywhere in the traffic lane where they feel safest.
If you’re going to build a bike path that ends at the airport, you might want to inform the FAA — as a Massachusetts town learned the hard way.
New York’s police commissioner remains trapped in the last century, saying he opposes attempts to legalize ebikes and e-scooters because he’s not sure they’re safe. If that’s the criteria he’s going to use, he probably supports banning cars, too.
An English bike rider says after a car driver apologized for a near collision, a bus driver traveling in the opposite direction pulled up next to them and blamed her for the close call, calling her a homophobic slur in the process.
The UK’s Cycle to Work program now offers commuters up to 39% of the cost of any new bicycle, including ebikes, to get more people riding to work. We need something like this in the US, let alone in Los Angeles – as long as it comes with safe infrastructure so people with actually use it.
A British lawyer explains why a bike rider didn’t get a farthing after he was injured hitting a pothole during a closed road sportive.
An Australian researcher says a lack of safe streets is a big reason why many people in the country don’t ride bicycles.
Chris Froome underwent six hours of surgery to repair multiple broken bones, after the four-time Tour de France winner crashed into a house at 34 mph when a gust of wind caught the wheel of his time trial bike just as he took his hand off his handlebars to blow his nose. Froome was reportedly on a reconnaissance ride for Wednesday’s time-trial stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné; he’ll now miss that, as well as next month’s Tour de France. And probably everything else this year.
Speaking of Froome, he’ll win the 2011 Vuelta from his room in the ICU, because erstwhile champ Juan Jose Cobo was retroactively busted for doping.
If you’re going to steal a bike in Canada, put on a helmet first. Even drivers think drivers are being more aggressive abound bike riders.
And now you can help clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by wearing a piece of it on your head when you ride.