Memorial for run-down geese at Sullivan’s Pond generates debate
Published Saturday, August 12, 2017 7:13PM ADT
Last Updated Saturday, August 12, 2017 7:37PM ADT
A memorial for two geese that were struck and killed by a vehicle while crossing a crosswalk near Sullivan’s Pond in Dartmouth, Wednesday, is creating a fair amount of debate.
People online started sharing their opinions when the planned ceremony showed up on social media, but the event’s organizers say they want to make a broader statement about safety and respect.
It was rainy Saturday afternoon at Sullivan’s pond before the memorial scheduled for 7 p.m., at the Gazebo close to the pond.
Neighbours said they think the birds are more reluctant to use the crosswalk and are more wary of people now.
“The memorial is, I think, a pretty cool idea, I mean, it's for people who live in the area, you just know the geese, you see them around, they just become a part of your walk,” said neighbor, Ross Mair.
Fellow neighbor, Angela Jones agrees with Mair.
"May seem silly to a lot of people, but, I think it's a good thing to have. It brings people together and I think it's wonderful,” Jones said.
People around the area say they have a very strong emotional attachment to the birds and see them as community pets.
The geese themselves remain protective of a third bird that was injured during the incident.
Neighbours also say the geese have started honking again and small shrines have been set up in the area throughout the week.
Katy Jean, who lives next to Sullivan’s Pond, organized the memorial.
“I will be saying a small eulogy for the geese, Eric Stephen Martin will be singing a song for everybody,” said Jean.
Jean said the event involves a ritual as well.
"Erin Ahearn has donated a crochet creation, so we'll be leaving the gazebo, around the pond, and going to where the accident occurred, and hanging a small goose on the crosswalk sign,” she says.
Most of the comments on social have been sad, but a few have mocked the event. The organizers say they're trying to make a broader statement.
"It definitely could have been a child, or a cyclist, not to downplay the lives of the geese, but, but it could have been very much worse,” said Jean.
Police say they have found no reason to lay charges against the driver, saying it was an accident.
Neighbours say they've noticed motorists have been become more aware of the crosswalk this week. They say they hope that means the remaining geese will be safer from now on.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Ron Shaw.