Nov 27. 2017
Vincent Peraino was a 24-year-old Clifton High School graduate, who died on Route 280 East in Harrison after crashing his motorbike into the rear of a car that had pulled in front of him. And that’s where I found his memorial, Route 280, when I was on my way to meet my friends. I searched his name in google and found the report about his death, Vincent seems to be a family man and motorcycle enthusiast.
According to New Jersey State Police spokesman Sgt. Adam Grossman, he died when his Kawasaki Ninja motorcycle struck the back of a Honda Civic that pulled out in front of him from the hard shoulder on the right side of the eastbound side of Route 280 in Harrison at 12:47 am on March 31, 2013.
Vincent’s memorial was created on April 19, 2013, almost half month after his tragic death. His friends create this memorial at Route 280 using the nickname ‘Vinnie Mcnasty’. From the original picture of memorial from his Facebook page, people left flowers, t-shirt, candles, beer, balloon and cross for him. I believe those objects are chosen for a reason, such as the motorcycle parts. I know his death or he has something to do with motorcycle. And it turns out Vincent did love motorcycle and died because of it. The memorial doesn’t change a lot, compare with the picture when the memorial just found, the flower was different, and the balloon was gone. Because the memorial was set on beside highway, there isn’t so many people came to visit him, the nearest visit might happen around 2014, judging by the 2014 shape glasses.
As for the type of this memorial, it’s hard to tell if is temporary or permeant. I think it should be a temporary memorial since there wasn’t any statue or other object that can last for a long time. However, this memorial has been there for more than 4 years, all the objects are still there, and it seems like no one is taking care of this memorial.
The memorial built right beside high way, it may be an alert to drivers to careful driving. His family want people to remember a good man. The road memorial builds easier than traditional memorial sites, the purpose is to let people know this man and the accident happened in him, which is different from traditional memorial, not to memorial something that someone done or great movement. I also think the memorial is better to replacement to a cemetery, because stop at the highway to mourn over a person’s death is very dangerous, and it is easy broke by severe weather.
One coincidence I found quite noticeable is that ‘ghetto’ showed up twice in Vincent’s memorial. The first one is on the t-shirt hanging on the grid, it says ‘support your local ghettos’, the second one is on fabric that printed ‘As one together in the ghetto’. From the reading material, ghetto was used when Jews were restricted and segregated but has since been applied in various contexts, but now is more represent a part of a city in which members of a minority group live, typically because of social, legal, or economic pressure. I believe in this case, ghetto means motorcycle enthusiast group, and was given by people who also shares Vincent’s hobby. In the “American scared space and contest of history”, it says space and place as we get to know it better and endow it with value. The street memorial is also giving value to remember the person that people loved.