Over one thousand walkers are anticipated to gather in the Historic Village of Greendale on Sunday, April 17th starting at 2:00 in the afternoon in front of Village Hall to walk in memory of Ava Marie Zimmerman in order to bring an increased awareness to motorists of the importance of pedestrian safety.
Five-year old, Ava Marie Zimmerman, was tragically struck and killed by a car while walking in the crosswalk with her mom, brother, aunt, and twin cousins last April 14th. Ava and her family were doing everything right that beautiful, sunny spring day. Ava and her brother had gotten off their bikes, waited at the corner with their mom and aunt, and only when it was safe, proceeded thru the crosswalk. Only steps away from the other side of the street, Ava and her mom were struck by a turning vehicle and Ava suffered fatal injuries.
There are an alarming number of pedestrian accidents in the United States. According to the Department of Transportation, in 2009, 4,092 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the United States and there were a whopping 59,000 pedestrians injured in traffic crashes. More specifically, Wisconsin’s Department of Transportation reported 54 pedestrian fatalities and 1,182 pedestrian/motor vehicle injuries in 2010. Ava’s family feels that no one should fear walking to the park, visiting a local store, or going to school. They feel passionate that pedestrians should have a feeling of safety, knowing drivers will watch out for them; they feel pedestrians should have the confidence that the laws that protect pedestrians will be followed by drivers and enforced by officials.
To that end, the family of Ava has organized a walk in Ava’s memory – AVA’s Walk: Advocating Vehicle Awareness. Initially this event was anticipated to be a gathering of approximately 300 friends and family, but has exploded to over 1,000 participants. The walk will take place at 3:00 starting at Village Hall, with the check-in and t-shirt pick up process running from 2:00 to 2:40 and a welcome ceremony to kick off the event at 2:40. Ava’s walkers will return from the one mile route at Greendale’s Village Hall to celebrate with food, activities for the children, educational material, music performed by Grace Weber, and the opportunity to sign Ava’s pledge; “Pledge AVA – Advocating Vehicle Awareness”.
There is no registration fee for the walk; everyone is welcome. Join the family of Ava Marie Zimmerman as they take a stand against these avoidable deaths and aid them in increasing awareness for pedestrian safety.