Missouri Department of Transportation Maintenance Crew Leader Kris Sandgren, an avid bicyclist from Springfield, Mo., began a 2,600 mile bicycle journey today to bring attention to the importance of work zone safety and raise money for a Missouri Fallen Workers' Memorial.
"When I first heard about the monument, I thought it was a great idea," Sandgren said. "Some of our losses were close to home. It made me think about the monument a lot harder when it happened to people I knew."
Sandgren left today from Anacortes, Wash., to spend three weeks of his own vacation time pedaling through seven states. He will ride approximately 100 miles per day and end his journey in Jefferson City, Mo. In between, he will travel through Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Iowa.
Since 1932, 130 MoDOT employees have died in the line of duty. Sandgren's ride highlights the importance of slowing down and using extra caution when traveling through a work zone and honors those workers who have lost their lives.
The memorial will be paid for entirely by private donations. About half of the needed $94,000 has been raised. The planned location is near the MoDOT headquarters building in Jefferson City, on the Capitol grounds.
To make a donation or pledge by the mile:
Make check payable to:
State Highway & Transportation Employees
Association of Missouri
Fallen Workers Memorial
c/o District 7 Highway Credit Union
3901 E. 32nd St., Suite A
Joplin, MO 64804
Attention: Dave B. Taylor