Officials continue to investigate the cause of a crash between a pickup truck and 10 motorcycles Friday evening. Seven people were killed in the crash in the town of Randolph. Throughout the weekend, the crash site drew those who wanted to pay their respects to the victims.
By Sunday evening, the debris is clear, but Route 2 is still marred for fifty yards with white scrapes and heavy bands of black rubber that swoop toward the shoulder. Dozens of flags planted in the grass riffle in the wind, marking the space of the accident, which involved members of a motorcycle club for U.S. Marines.
Everyone I talk to has some connection to the tragedy. They ride, they’ve crashed, they served – they knew the riders.
Ronald Trucott from Groveton is on this road almost every day. As the Viet Nam vet walks the length of the memorial scene, he takes pictures of the flags - though he’s not sure why.
“It's great,” Trucott says, trying to hold back tears. “It's really great. Sorry. Just so hard to believe. You know, I have friends that I know in Groveton that are Marines and everything you know and they're probably hurting too.”
Most of the cars that pass slow down – and most of the motorcycles pull to the side of the road. The riders dismount and stand, bewildered and unsure.
Steve Marks rode up from Dracut, Mass. As a senior member of the Disavowed Motorcycle Club, he knew some of the people who died.
“We've spent a lot of time with them at the Haverhill bike night,” Marks says. “We were going to get together this year but...I can't even imagine how this happened. I'm in a state of shock. It just doesn't make sense.”
Frank Couture drove up on a Goldwing with his wife from Methuen, Mass. They’ve been driving through New Hampshire all day, all their favorite routes, but this was their destination.
“Came all the way up here just to see this, just to show our respect,” Couture says. “You know I woulda rode for 10 hours if I had to, to come and see this. This is just so sad. You got to show your respect for what happened here. It's sad. There's no need for this. Nobody should have to go through this.”
The sky is blue. Mount Washington is close. A man kneels down beside a makeshift wooden cross that reads “RIP Jarheads.”