A new symbol of public mourning: The Ghost Bike

The sidewalks of Echo Park often sprout temporary alters of votive candles, flowers, hand-written notes and photos to mark the spot of a fatal gang shooting or accident. But the temporary tribute to honor Jesus-Renteria Castillo, who was killed by a motorist last Sunday while riding his bike on Glendale Boulevard, will take the form of an old bicycle painted white, a Ghost Bike.

Ghost Bikes, which are normally chained to a pole or fence near the accident site, are designed to honor the dead but also to raise awareness of bike accidents and safety, according to GhostBikes.org The first Ghost Bike memorial appeared in St. Louis in 2003, according to Wikipedia.

The Ghost Bike in memory for Castillo is scheduled to be installed Friday shortly before an 8 p.m. memorial service at Glendale Boulevard south of where it passes underneath Sunset Boulevard, said Echo Park resident and bike rider Stephen Roullier.

“The family has been contacted and is being invited,” said Roullier. “Also, the monthly LA Critical Mass ride is also being encouraged to make that a destination on that night. In addition we hope that many other local cyclists will attend.”

Related Link:
Echo Park Ghost Rider CityWatch

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