Letter: Permanent consequences
I heard on Monday morning on the radio about an accident that involved five kids — and I say kids — and one was pronounced dead. Then it proceeded to say near Carbondale, a county road.
I was only half listening because my mind was suddenly on these children, their families, the rest of their lives and the pain they must be feeling. As I drove down “the hill” as I do every morning on my way to work, there was a patrol car with flashers, a young man in a yellow vest taking photos. Odd, I thought.
I actually stopped to let trucks approaching drive by so I could then drive around. As I did, the man in the vest gave me a wave, and as I got to the bottom of the hill there were cones and yellow tape. It took a few minutes for my mind to process what I was seeing, and it was the accident scene. My heart sank, and I felt very sad knowing what I just drove by so casually.
By Monday morning there, ever so eloquently placed, was a beautiful floral arrangement of flowers, a land marker we all have seen one too many times. The marker that pinpoints and reminds us of a life lost. My husband told me as he drove to work that day he saw a group there putting this up. Again more sadness.
Tuesday on my way home from work as I drove up “the hill,” there stood four young people, standing there looking at each other, looking over the edge, looking confused, looking pained. I couldn’t help but feel even more heartbroken. It is so close to graduation, they/she was so young, her parents will have a hole in their hearts forever, the driver and the kids involved — their lives will forever be different.
We all know this didn’t have to happen. We all wish it didn’t. But it did. We all may know of a similar story of people who this may have happened to — because of this permanent consequence it doesn’t make things easier to cope with it reminds us of what not to do. Life is too precious to be so careless.
The permanent consequences of the choice to drink and drive is just that — a permanent consequence. I couldn’t imagine if it happened to our children or their friends. I hope everyone can heal from this and other people young and old take this to heart. It didn’t need to end up this way. My heartfelt prayers to all the families and friends of the young lady no longer with us and to those who feel and are living with this experience.
Jo Anna Hunter
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