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After "ghost bike" goes missing, fundraising efforts underway for memorial to slain cyclist

Posted: 5:17 PM, Nov 16, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-16 19:25:47-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- For years, Anthony Saluto was a fixture at the Opera House in River Market.

“He loved coming here," said his mother, Lorrie Brown. "He loved working here. He had so many friends."

Saluto was biking to the River Market when he was hit and killed near Independence and Tracy in April of 2016 .

Shortly after it happened, members of the cycling community installed what’s known as a “ghost bike” at the scene of the crash. Ghost bikes, painted in all white, are used around the country to memorialize the lives of cyclists killed.

But earlier this year, Saluto’s ghost bike went missing.

 

 

 

“We’re not entirely sure what happened, whether it was stolen or something else happened,” BikeWalkKC Policy Coordinator Michael Kelley said.

41 Action News reached out to the city, where a spokesperson said they did not remove the bike.

While it’s unclear what happened to the original memorial, BikeWalkKC and Saluto’s family are planning something more permanent.

“We proposed what we’re calling a ghost bike rack,” Kelley said.

The white bike rack will have a cutout that reads, “Anthony Saluto: Ride in Paradise.” It’s meant to serve as more than just a reminder of Anthony.

“Every time someone sees that, they should understand that it also represents a call to making the streets safe for everyone,” said Saluto’s uncle, Howard Wilkens.

The total cost of making the rack and a permit is around $1,000, and Kelley says they’ve raised about half that amount.

The plan is to install the ghost bike rack in front of the Opera House, where Anthony loved to spend time.

“To know that people are still thinking about him and still love him and still care about what happened to him, I am just so excited,” Brown said.
 
People are able to donate to the bike rack project here .