Cycling in Sydney Australia
As often happens in the lazy hours over Christmas and New Year when you spend time with family, there's ample opportunity for reminiscence and discussion of family history. On my mother's side, we know a great deal of this going back many generations; my uncle is retired and an amateur history buff. On my late father's side, we know very little at all, even only a generation or two back.
My mother casually mentioned this latter fact to my uncle during the break and he chose to interpret it as a kind of challenge. :-) Within a few hours he'd found several documents related to various members of my father's family - including something about my grandmother's brother, William Vincent, that particularly interested me. This is from the 'Sydney Morning Herald' of Monday, August 24, 1931 (read down to the fourth and fifth paragraphs, in particular):
Reading this, I loved being reminded of just how common bicycle-riding was back then - particularly, I'd imagine, for a member of a working-class family, as he was. I wasn't so keen on the contemporary parallels: cyclist hit on the road, later dies of his injuries, driver leaves the scene.
That William was probably his family's major breadwinner (we do know he was an electrician, and had worked on the Sydney Harbour Bridge) and that the accident occurred not far from where I now work, at the University of Sydney - a place he likely never imagined anyone he knew could aspire to attend - makes the story even more poignant for me.
I really do hope they found that lorry driver.