Becky Meade

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Becky Meade
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Age: 44

Phiiladelphia Drive
Dayton , OH
United States


Becky was an avid cyclist riding up to 50 miles a day. On October 22nd, she was struck by a motorist who did give her the right of way. She died the same day

She leaves behind a husband, Christopher, and two sons, Jacob 21 and
Benjamin 19. she was an avid outdoor person. She also was an organ

A segment on Becky and her ghost bike aired on News7

from the Times

bicyclist honored with bench, 'ghost bike'

Times Community Newspapers

Tuesday, April 27,

The day of Oct. 22 began like any other for Becky Laughter
Meade. The 44-year-old bicyclist mounted her bike and hit the open road
for some exhilarating exercise. According to Meade's sister-in-law,
Vandalia resident Mary Laughter, the ride was a daily ritual.

was just an avid bicyclist," Laughter said. "She rode about 50-miles
everyday she could ride."

Sadly, this pleasant ride would end in
tragedy. Meade was struck and killed by a motorist at Philadelphia and
Bon Air, just on the border of Harrison Township and Butler Township.
Her untimely passing left a loving father and two adoring sons bereaved.
Moreover, the loss was felt throughout the community.

"She was
pretty much a lifetime resident of Vandalia until she moved up on 25A a
few years," Laughter said.

Meade was an alumni of Butler High
School. She graduated with the class of 1983. Meade's life was
celebrated at the Vandalia United Methodist Church on Oct. 31 with
Pastor Chris Heiss officiating.

And, that celebration continues.
In honor of the departed mother and bicyclist, Five River Metro Parks
allowed Meade's family to set up a bench on the bike path at the
Taylorsville Dam. Engraved on the bench are the words, "In memory of
Beck R. Laughter-Meade."

"I think part of the reason they allowed
us to do it is because Becky's youngest son works for the park as an
intern," Laughter said. "So, they were very gracious in letting us do
this as a memorial to Becky. She loved the outdoors. She was an avid
outdoors person."

According to Laughter, the bench will be
brought in during the winter so that it will not be exposed to the harsh

"They said that those benches usually last about
25-years," Laughter said. "I'm sure they'll take extra special care of
that one."

In addition to the bench, Meade's family set up a
"ghost bike" at the site of the accident last Wednesday evening. Ghost
bikes are painted all white and locked to street signs near the crash
sites where bicyclists have lost their lives. A small plaque accompanies
the bike, commemorating the tragedy that occurred nearby and serving as
a silent proclamation of the bicyclist's right to safety.

more of an awareness thing along with kind of a memorial," Laughter
said. "As the weather gets nice, people are going to be out on bikes.
Motorist just need to slow down and be aware. I am more of aware of
bicyclists now than I was before."

Laughter stated that, from her
own persona vantage point, motorists need to be more cognizant of the
bicyclist with who share the road with them.

"I think they
(motorists) think bikers should get out of their way," Laughter said.
"Bicyclists have to follow the same rules as motorists, but they're are
supposed to be given the right of way."

According to Laughter,
bicycling was a passion that could be traced back to Meade's youth.

won a bike at a church event when she was younger," Laughter said. "She
liked bicycle riding. After she got married and her kids got to a
certain age, she got into riding. She was a fan of Lance Armstrong.
Plus, Beck just loved being outdoors."

Now, the loss of Meade is
providing local bicyclists with a voice. Meade's ghost bike stands as a
somber, yet bold statement on extending the rights of the road to
bikers. According to Laughter, this is the first time that a ghost bike
has been placed in this region.

"A ghost bike has never been done
for Dayton," Laughter said. "This will be a first for Dayton."

with speaking for her fellow bicyclists, Meade also gave three people a
new lease on life as an organ donor.

"Both her kidneys and her
liver were donated," Laughter said. "She does live on in a couple of
people. The liver recipient wrote a letter and said that, if she hadn't
got the liver when she did, she would have been taken off the transplant
list within two more months. She was to the point where they wouldn't
have been able to do anything unless something came along. So, Becky
lives on. She helped three people."

Bicyclist, mother, organ
donor... all of these qualities and more constituted the person of Becky
Laughter Meade. And, those qualities are now encapsulated within a
modest bench and a white bicycle.

Yet, while Meade's family
appreciates the commemorative value of these artifacts, nothing will
replace the loving mother and avid bicyclist that lost her life only a
few months ago.

"The last six months have been hard," Laughter
said. "It was devastating when Becky got hit. She was a real rock, not
just for her own family, but for her whole family."

For Laughter,
her sister-in-law's untimely passing reflects the fragility of
existence and the perennial questions that surround life's passages.

all people, I still don't believe she should be gone," Laughter said.
"But, it was an accident and you can't bring her back."

Laughter hopes that the commemorative artifacts dedicated to her sister
will hold didactic value for the community.

"We hope that just
the awareness will help people realize that that's somebody's loved on
on a bicycle and they have the right to be on the road, too," Laughter

From her obituary

MEADE, Rebekah Rae "Becky" (Laughter)
age 44 of Tipp City, passed away as the result of a traffic accident
Thursday October 22, 2009 at Miami Valley Hospital. Becky was born
November 19, 1964 in Dayton. She is survived by her husband of 25 years
Christopher Meade of Tipp City; 2 sons Jacob and Benjamin both at home;
her parents Bob & Judy Laughter of Vandalia; one brother Rob &
wife Mary Laughter of Vandalia; one sister Rachel & husband Stu
Mellor of FL; grandmother Mae Swank of Vandalia; niece Casey Laughter
and nephew David Gross; dear friend, Tambi Spirk & family; mother
& father-in-law Patricia & William Wells of W. VA; 2
brothers-in-law Steve & wife Jackie Meade of W. VA and Mike &
wife Jill Meade of Dayton; one sister-in-law Teresa Beyer of Centerville
and a host of other relatives and friends. A Celebration of Becky's
Life will be held Saturday October 31 at 2:00pm at the Vandalia United
Methodist Church 200 S. Dixie Dr. Vandalia with Pastor Chris Heiss
officiating. The family would like to continue celebrating Becky's life
following the services with a gathering of family and friends in the
church fellowship hall for a time of sharing memories. If so desired,
contributions may be made to the Aullwood Audubon Society in Becky's
memory. Arrangements in care of Morton & Whetstone Funeral Home,