Roadside Memorials
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Thread: Roadside Memorials

  1. #1
    You go squish now! Array mli35's Avatar
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    Post Roadside Memorials

    Roadside Memorials

    First off this thread is not intended to insult or verbally desecrate these monuments on the roadside, so please no bashing of current events or mention of existing memorials. I would like to discuss and explore this idea of roadside memorials and get your thought on this phenomenon.

    The purpose of roadside memorials is to give recognition that a motorist may it be a rider or driver who lost their lives along a certain roadway. Roadside memorials provide the families and friends an opportunity to morn and heal. On the same hand it also marks the exact or approximate location where a very, very sad tragic (mostly fatal) accident occurred. These road side memorials are a recent occurrence by my estimation it may have started within the past 10 years and are more noticeable today then before.

    This is where the issue goes grey for me, to my knowledge most vehicular (cars and bikes) accidents there is a recovery of the personís remains. The personís remains are then taken buried or ďceremonialĒ buried (cremated) in a cemetery or private plot of land. This is where I believe most people would say their good byes, and pay respects to the departed love one and family and friends that still remain.

    IMO the cemetery is where respects, memorials and visits from friends and family should ultimately be. For me, I just canít visit a roadside memorial site and not think of the accident that occurred, it is this thought that takes away from truly remembering a person. The fact that the person soul and body does not rest at the roadside memorial either, in my opinion disrespect the final resting place of the love one.

    The roadside memorial site has itís place (in the beginning) but in the end as time goes on it should be allowed to fade and the only memory of the person that should remain is not the accident site but the best aspects of the person and the peace that they have that and we are all searching for.

    There are more in my thoughts but I shall leave it here.

    Some may argue that a roadside memorial would be a reminder to all to take care and be safer on the road. In a way it does but more and more I wonder why the emphasis is put on the place were a person died and not on the place where a person rests?
    A bad day of riding is, still better than a good day of work.

  2. #2
    Devil's Advocate Array RoadBlur's Avatar
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    If you have ever walked around a lumber mill and noticed that everybody there does NOT stand up against a wall that is filled with dents and splinters, then you would understand one giant service that these memorials provide. They tell you that maybe, just maybe, this particular spot is a tricky one. Maybe its a blind corner, maybe there's a treestump in those bushes, maybe trains cut through unannounced.. who knows, but you know to be extra double careful, on account of the person before you that wasn't.

    Also, many people I know prefer to go to these locations to remember what happened, where, and why they don't ride like they used to... with their now deceased friend. The memories of what you saw, or heard about happening there are a lot more vivid when you ride out and stand where it all happened.

    Anyways, I guess I disagree that they have no purpose.
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  3. #3
    Lee RideFar Array elevation's Avatar
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    Everyone has a different way of remembering and honouring those that have left us. There is no set manual on how tragic events that have happened should be dealt with. The roadside memorials, cremation, burials, etc are all different ways people deal with death. However people want to deal with them is fine with me and I will never question it.

  4. #4
    Behind the great firewall Array iamcanjim's Avatar
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    May 2006
    Shanghai, China
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    When I moved to BC from Ontario, the concept of a roadside memorial seemed strange. Apparently, highway workers remove the ones in Ontario at least.

    Judging by how ICBC seems to operate, I am certain that it is their influence that keeps highway workers from cleaning these sites up.

    I do see them as a "caution" sign," however, since most vehicular deaths in BC are due to drunk driving, I quite often dismiss them as such. I am likely incorrect in many cases, but that is how my mind tends to work.

    I do occasionally wonder about peoples taste in building them, as some are definite eyesores. Perhaps they were designed to be eyesores to make a point.

    I do find it frustrating that it is impossible to determine the circumstances that lead to a roadside memorial. I have noticed some being built for people where I think people should try to remember the life of a person rather than their death (again, in the case of drunk driving). If someone I knew passed away due to an accident involving their consumption of alcohol, I wouldn't want to build a roadside memorial to honour their last poor decision.

    Notice I have said "I think" or "I wonder." I certainly respect the rights of others to do as they see fit to remember their loved ones.

    But I would like to make a definitive statement.

    If I die in a traffic accident, I hope my family and friends DO NOT make a roadside memorial to me. However, the case may vary with respect to the individual involved. And if someone makes one for me, I doubt I will care if I am passed away.

    As for ones for certain leaders of our community, a roadside memorial is very appropriate as a community effort. Communities need to understand their roots and founders and that is the case for this community as well.

  5. #5
    Insultant Array cuski's Avatar
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    They're not so new in Europe... I've seen them ever since I was a kid, and didn't really stop to think about their "purpose". If friends and families feel the need to do this, it's their business.
    • He who dares not offend, cannot be honest.
    • The whole religious complexion of the modern world is due to the absence from Jerusalem of a lunatic asylum.

  6. #6
    Registered User Array 5thgear's Avatar
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    Mar 2003
    2005 CBR 600RR
    I think it helps solve peoples questions. Everyone wants to know the same basic thing.

    WHEN ?

    This is all answered at a roadside memorial. I think seeing the roadside grave helps people understand and start the healing process.

  7. #7
    its closer now Array SILVER_6R's Avatar
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    Sep 2002
    closer than you think
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    for me.... i do think of the accident that occured... but more importantly i think of the person... and i usually think of something funny or a good memory of that person.

    and becuase i drive by a certain one almost everyday... i say hello everyday....
    R.I.P. Dan and Cody

    Forever in my mind, forever in my thoughts, forever in my heart

  8. #8
    Chronic Array PRSmechanic's Avatar
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    Aug 2002
    2011 VStrom 650, 1983 KZ750, 2006 WR450, and any racebike I can get my hands on!!
    I generally don't visit them, because it's just a place where something bad happened. The person is gone, and that place does not represent the spirit I miss.
    However, I totally understand that others need this place to go and say hello. And yes, it also reminds me of the consequences of my actions.

    In some places, it also reminds me of the terrain, and sometimes the habits of the locals.

    Do as you need I guess, as long as it's positive.
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