Monday, August 27, 2012

Crusade For Safety

I know this blog is about teaching :) So I know I am taking a leap of faith here by sharing something with you.

Today is the 13th anniversary of a day that my world changed forever. I was involved a fatal car accident as a teenager. My childhood "sweetheart" ,Jimmy, passed away in this accident. The top of the car caved in on me severely damaging my face. In our car (shown below), there were four passengers. The driver (Jimmy) died instantly. My brother walked away with a few cuts and bruises, but memories that would last a lifetime. Our other friend, was more severely injured. He broke his legs and his arm. It was a very difficult time for all of us. God sure put is through it,though, to help others.




As I've grown older, I often think about the experiences I have been blessed to experience, and it saddens me that my friend, Jimmy, was unable to  experience the same things. His life ended way too soon. He was a great person who would have went very far in his life. He dreamed of attending Florida State College and was a die hard 'Noles Fan!

After this accident, I was involved in several cosmetic facial surgeries to repair the damage. It often bothered me. Now, it's just  apart of who I am.  And I am okay with that. Our accident, was just a result of inexperience, no texting, alcohol or anything like that. 

I found out afterwards, years actually, that my grandfather had a campaign called "Crusade for Safety". He worked with the local police department to reward drivers who were caught driving carefully. Local companies donated products or services to people who were caught driving carefully. My grandfather passed away when I was just a small child, so for me, this was huge. I felt so close to someone that I have no memories of.


So I wanted to take all of these things, and create a virtual "Crusade For Safety". By that I just mean, when you get into your car, think about the choices you make. If you are a driver who texts and drive, I encourage you to read about Alex Brown. Any distraction is a danger to not only yourself, but to other drivers on the road. Wearing a seat belt SAVED my life.  Remember these things, life is too short and "death doesn't play favorites". Turn the radio down, stop answering the phone, and just drive. If you have teenagers, I encourage you to talk to them, even if you already have, AGAIN. Make a passenger limit rule, a cell phone rule, a TEXTING rule....anything you think that can keep your child SAFE. Young drivers are so inexperienced, combined with these other things, it's a dangerous situation. Be sure you drive with them often, even after they receive their full license. Jimmy had just turned 16, three weeks prior. 

If you teach high school, please share this message with your students!!! 

Take this image, place it on your blog, profile,FB page, twitter, pinterest board, whatever, as a reminder that you are going to make an effort to be a better driver and talk to your kids about the same thing. Make this week your "Crusade For Safety". Print this image,display it on your wall, especially if you teach high school!!!!

 I am so fortunate that god spared me that day, he knew I had work to do, he knew I would share HIS message.  God is the reason that I am the person I am today, I am forever grateful for his love. 

Happy Teaching :)

14 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing your story, great post with a lot to think about!

    Caitlin
    Kindergarten Smiles

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  2. Thank You, Caitlin! I really appreciate it :)


    Ashley

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  3. I will think about you and your grandfather today as I drive to work and reflect on safe driving. Thanks for being so open in a thoughtful, sensitive post, Ashley.

    Kim
    Finding JOY in 6th Grade

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  4. My husbands sister was killed by a drunk driver while bike riding with her husband a 2 kids- they missed out on their mom watching them grow up in such wonderful adults. Thanks for sharing your story Ashley.
    Arlene
    LMN Tree

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  5. Ashley, I am very proud of the young woman that you have become. That was such a horrible day for so many people. I do not know if you remember or not but you had stopped at a store just before the accident. Jimmy would not leave the store until everone in the car put on their seatbelt. Although Jimmy tragically died in the accident I have always believed that because of his insistance that everyone put on there seatbelts the other three of you lived. He was a very special young man that will always be remembered. My Dad your (grandfather) would be very proud of you. He spent many years of his life trying to help educate and prevent accidents. I believe he was looking over you that day. I love you MOM

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  6. Goosebumps. Thank you for the reminder.

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  7. Oh, my! I have goosebumps. I'm so sorry this tragedy happened, but, I appreciate you telling us your story and I wish you nothing but the best.

    Ѽ Lori
    Teaching With Love and Laughter
    luvyorkies@gmail.com

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  8. Thank you for the reminder. I have a heavy heart today as one of my very best friends from high school passed away in a car accident this day 6 years ago. Always being safe in the car is such an important message!

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  9. Thank you for sharing! My oldest son was involved in a car accident 1 year ago that should have been fatal. Also, a result of inexperience (over correcting), the car flipped and rolled end over end and side to side several times. His girlfriend was ejected but Praise God they both survived with very minor injuries in comparison to how it could have turned out. Next week my second son will begin driving on his own and I have been sick at the thought of going through those first few weeks/months of the "new driver" stage. Thank you for the reminders...I plan to let him read your post.

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  10. Kelly, Thank you for sharing. I think sometimes we get into this "It will not happen to me" rut. Especially as teenagers. I think it's important even after our kids start driving that we drive with them often to be sure they are not doing something that can distract them. I am so glad your son and his girlfriend are okay. I really appreciate you sharing my story. That was my exact reason for putting it out there for everyone to see...if someone takes extra precautions that they normally wouldn't take because they heard my story, it's worth it.

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  11. Thank you for sharing your story!!! You are amazing! :) <3

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  12. Thanks for sharing such a personal post. It is such an important message for all of us distracted people these days!!!

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  13. Thanks for sharing a personal, touching story and bringing this to our attention. Driving should just be driving; no texting, no loud music, no distractions of any kind. My husband lost his dad to a drunk driver. My husband was 15 at the time.
    Najda

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