Marcus Gets A Memorial, 7 Years Late

A mother's seven years of stubbornness has overcome a bureaucracy.

Donna Anderson knows her life will not be whole again. But a small ceremony, set for Dec. 28, will at least confirm her belief that her young son "should be remembered for the good his death brought."

It will be a simple affair, the installing of a sign with a message for motorists: "Drive Carefully In Memory of Marcus Ryan Anderson."

Marcus, 7, died July 17, 1987, as he crossed Delridge Way Southwest near Southwest Brandon Street. Though one car had stopped to let him pass, another car passed that one and struck him.

Anderson, 37, won a financial settlement from the city - but did not stop at that. She pushed on, warning the city about what people in that part of West Seattle had come to call the "Delridge Speedway."

The city eventually redesigned the section, halving the number of traffic lanes in each direction, and separating them with a left-turn lane. New stoplights were installed to further slow traffic.

In 1989, Anderson began pushing hard for the memorial sign.

Last June, she wrote to all nine Seattle City Council members and later had her attorney call Mayor Norm Rice's office.

Finally, the city approved the sign, setting precedent for a new program. Relatives or neighbors of traffic victims now may have the city install a memorial sign for a $125 fee, said Mark Murray, Rice's spokesperson.