Louisville Bicycle Club
September-October 2007 Newsletter

Speech Text
Bridge to Bicycle-Friendly Louisville

by Andy Clarke, Executive Director, League of American Bicyclists

Andy Clarke, Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists, flew in to Louisville to speak at the Memorial Ride for Chips Cronen, August 12, 2007. His remarks follow.

Riding a bicycle is such a simple pleasure. The environmental, health, energy and traffic benefits of bicycling are clear and we know that as individuals and as a community that we would be better off if more people rode bicycles more often. Chips Cronen knew that.

Chips Cronen also knew that riding a bicycle isnít without risk and that cyclists, motorists and every user of our streets and highways must always rely on each other to share the road together. He was a safe rider, a strong rider, and he loved to ride. So, our hearts go out to the Cronen family and to Chipís friends and fellow cyclists as we remember him [today].

The Chips Cronen Memorial Ride is an extraordinary response to an awful tragedy. The ride rightly honors Chipsí life; it demonstrates the strength of the bicycling community and the bonds that tie us together; and the ride powerfully demonstrates that good can sometimes come from even the worst of circumstances.

We commend Mayor Abramson, the Metro Louisville government, and the Louisville Bicycle Club ó and especially Ed Tonini ó for seizing this moment to make Louisville a better, safer community for bicyclists and for your courage and determination to ensure tragedies like this do not happen again. Your commitment to making Louisville a truly Bicycle-Friendly Community is so impressive and the legacy of this day and of Chips Cronen will be a better, stronger, and safer Louisville.

Let me emphasize this last point. Making Louisville a better and safer community for bicyclists is about much more than just doing a few good things for bicycling. A community where people can safely bicycle is a community where people want to live and raise their families. A community where cyclists and motorists truly share the road is one where it is also safe to cross the street, to walk to school, as well as to ride a bike and to drive.

I am honored to represent the League of American Bicyclists, our 300,000 affiliated members in bicycle clubs across the country, and the tens of millions of Americans who get on a bike and ride each year, at the Chips Cronen Memorial Ride. I am humbled by the courage of the Cronen family and friends. And I will always remember Chips Cronen.

The League of American Bicyclists is based in Washington, DC. Visit www.bikeleague.org for more information. Or contact 571-213-5422.


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web posted: 21 Sep 2007
last updated: 24 Sep 2007