[First filed: May 29, 2009 @ 11:22]
At the end of March there was a double fatality on Clift Crescent in Richardson made particularly tragic by the youth of the victims Steven Rial, 20, and Megan Minney, 17.
The Canberra Times today reports that the roadside shrine which accreted at the scene of the accident has been removed by city rangers at the request of Roads ACT.
(Apparently the family were supposed to be consulted, but would we expect the ACT Government to get that right?)
In this post religious age are these shrines the only way forward for shared community grief? Or just an ugly eyesore? How long should they be tolerated?
I vaguely recall a plan for red and black roadside poles to symbolise crashes (red for injury, black for fatalities) but it seems that fell out of favour (perhaps for making it too easy for the public to see points of consistent failure in our roads?).
UPDATED: The whole thing has taken an interesting twist with a very angry Facebook group forming, and (at the time of writing) 1,396 angry youngsters threatening to (amongst other things) burn down the house of the family who tried to save their friends lives:
- Cory Mckinnon wrote
at 9:11pm on May 27th, 2009
if they take it down… then we will just have to keep puttin it up untill they get it throgh there thick f***in heads… or mabye we should just burn there f***in house down
This morning saner voices are starting to be heard on the group’s wall and it appears a compromise has been reached for the cross to be placed across the road.
I’m personally intrigued by all the saloon bar lawyers angrily debating points of law invoking a local council of which I was previously unaware.
FURTHER UPDATE: The homeowner involved has weighed in with a comment I think deserves elevation from the comments section:
- #141 posted by homeowner
11:39, 31 May 2009
As I stated in my comment on facebook I thought I had an understanding with the father’s of both Meagan and Steve about all this but obviously not. I never once siad there could not be a memorial at all. I just didn’t want crosses and large photo’s of the kids that my family had to look at every day. We don’t need that. I said I would clean up dead flowers as needed and that they could even mount the plaques on the wall of my garden bed. After what our family has been through the last few days with people driving past blasting horns and yelling abuse that these people never have to experiance this. Thankyou to those that can at least understand my side of this even if no one else does.
Chin up homeowner. I think you’ll find the vast majority of the population is now on your side.
I’d like to suggest that readers who have teenagers make a careful check of the facebook group to make sure their little darlings aren’t involved. If you know someone with teenagers maybe pass the word on to them?
ANOTHER UPDATE: There is something I can do directly so here it goes. At 12 noon tomorrow, 1 June, I’m going to take down the names of all the members of the facebook group and record them here. Let googling future employers make of that what they will. Parents are well advised to do some parenting and the more thoughtful facebookers might want to reconsider their membership of what was well intentioned, but has turned into a lynch mob.
FINAL UPDATE: The matter of the facebook group now appears to have been resolved. You can read more about it here.