Regardless of your opinion on Ryan Dunn, his death (and Zachary Hartwell’s) has affected many people, especially out here. Out here meaning Chester County, PA.
Mike and I first learned of his death through a family member of a friend of Ryan, then the following media onslaught followed.
Did he do dumb things? Yes. Do we all? Yes. Are some dumb things bigger than others, well of course. Drinking and driving is obviously dangerous. There’s been alot of criticism of Dunn doing so (rightfully), but I don’t think it’s reason to say his death was a good or dismissible event, which I’ve been hearing from some people.
Seeing photos of the charred remains of plants and the heavily injured trees immediately reminded me of my friend Mike Ski who passed away a few years ago in an accident on the Girard Point Bridge in Philly. Sober and smart, he was driving home late at night when his car stalled and a large truck hit him, whereupon his car went up in flames, and he passed away on his way to the hospital. Different circumstances, but dying in a fiery wreck is not funny, regardless of who is in the car and what they did in their life. This is not a time for derision, this is a time to speak about drinking responsibly to avoid the loss of a child, a sibling, a friend, a parent, whoever.
Ahem. On the way to the orchard to pick raspberries yesterday (aren’t we all fancy with our farmy ways) my mom and I passed the accident spot. How did I know? There were orange cones cordoning off the shoulder and there were cars and people all over, paying their respects to the two victims (remember, Zachary?). Flowers, candles, drawings, balloons, and graffiti everywhere. At least 20 feet of guardrail is coated in Sharpied messages and sketches. The largest roadside shrine I’ve ever seen.