New York Commemorates First Anniversary of Bike Path Attack

NEW YORK (AP) -
Authorities stand near a damaged Home Depot pickup truck after its driver drove onto a bike path striking and killing several people on Oct. 31, 2017. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

New York is commemorating the first anniversary of the day a man driving a pickup truck mowed down pedestrians and cyclists on a busy bike path along the Hudson River killing eight people and seriously injuring 11 others.

Among the dead were five Argentinian friends vacationing in New York, a Belgian tourist, a New Jersey man who worked at the World Trade Center, and one New Yorker, a software engineer.

Police Commissioner James O’Neill and Mayor Bill de Blasio joined emergency responders Wednesday as a wreath of white roses was placed at the site of the attack to mark the anniversary. A small group of family members and friends attended the ceremony, along with the consuls general of Argentina and Belgium.

The group observed a minute-long moment of silence in memory of the victims.

After the attack, “the people of the city responded in extraordinary fashion,” said de Blasio. “Instead of living in fear, people came out in droves to show they would not be moved, they would not be changed, they would not be intimidated.”

“They were sending a message: that the terrorists have lost already,” De Blasio added. “New Yorkers do not allow themselves to be terrorized.”

The truck’s driver, Sayfullo Saipov, was shot by police after crashing into a school bus and is awaiting trial on terrorism charges. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

Over the past year, the miles-long Hudson River bike path that was the scene of the attack has been outfitted with temporary concrete barriers and permanent steel posts to block vehicles.