VALENCIA, CA—Solemnly braving the 230-foot heights of the steel roller coaster while carrying bouquets of flowers, framed photographs, and personal letters, friends of recently deceased Jeff Brinkley placed a memorial at the exact spot on the Six Flags Viper ride Thursday where their companion met his untimely and tragic end. “When riders zoom past and lift their hands into air, I hope they glimpse these beautiful tributes hanging off the corkscrew and know that the 70 mile-per-hour wind on their cheeks is Jeff,” said Brinkley’s former classmate Ericka Troutworth, who was among the group of friends that returns every night to relight memorial candles, which are regularly blown out when the Viper’s 36-person train speeds past them. “At least Jeff died as he lived, screaming at the top of his lungs while a steel bar held him firmly in an open car accelerating towards the Earth in a terrifying plummet.” Those who wish to pay their respects are invited to a candlelight vigil to be held at 9 p.m. tomorrow on the coaster’s straight section after the hammerhead turn, across from the ghost car.
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