AMSTERDAM — The conceptual design for a memorial to the 20 people killed in October’s Schoharie limousine crash is to be unveiled Saturday at a fundraiser to pay for its construction and maintenance.
The event will run 4 to 8 p.m. at Riverlink Park in Amsterdam, a city that several of the limousine passengers called home or held connections to.
Organizers expect hundreds to attend. Tickets are $50 each or $90 per couple, and all proceeds will go to the memorial; food and drink have been donated for the event. A silent auction will feature what is promised to be an above-average collection of donated items on the block. Entertainment will be provided by Steve Cowles and Greg Aidala.
Lois Goblet of the Reflections Memorial Foundation said the memorial has been designed with the input of the families of the victims.
“On Saturday we will unveil the digital conception,” Goblet said. “As soon as we unveil it, the link on the web page will go live.”
The memorial will stand at the crash site, just north of the Apple Barrel Country Store at the intersection of state routes 30 and 30A.
The stretched SUV limo was carrying 17 passengers from Amsterdam to the Cooperstown area for a birthday party Oct. 6. The driver came down the long Route 30 hill, passed a stop sign at high speed, crossed Route 30A, and went off the road. All 17 passengers were killed, as were the driver and two bystanders in the Apple Barrel parking lot.
The wreck was the deadliest transportation disaster in the United States since a Buffalo-area plane crash in 2009.
An expert for the prosecution has blamed a catastrophic brake failure for the limo crash. The operator of the limousine company faces 20 counts each of second-degree manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.
Goblet said the cost of the memorial is not known yet, as the design is not finalized. But so many people and companies have pledged help with construction that the greater need will likely be paying for its upkeep, rather than building it.
Tickets for Saturday’s fundraiser are available online at the foundation’s website — https://reflectionsmemorialfoundation.org/shop/ — and at Apple Barrel, Carrot Barn, Grapevine Farms, Farmhouse Floral Design, Hill and Markes and DomAdi’s Restaurant.
Those who want to help but are unable to attend Saturday’s event can send tax-deductible donations to the non-profit organization in care of the Bank of Richmondville, PO Box 488, Schoharie, NY 12023.