Stop Texting and Driving

By Max Resnik

March 9, 2012 Updated Mar 9, 2012 at 6:31 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – North Side High School students packed the auditorium Friday to hear about the dangers of texting while driving.

Parkview Hospital Trauma Centers, the Indiana State Police and AAA joined Diveeta Thompson, whose son was killed while texting and driving in 2008, to remind students of the dangers of texting while driving. Prior to each group sharing different facts and statistics about the dangers, students were also given an opportunity to see exactly how difficult distracted driving can be with a simulator set up in the auditorium.

Thompson, who has made it her mission to bring awareness to her tragic son’s death, says students need to understand the devastation she and her family have endured.

“I’m here to share knowledge with them about my devastation in an effort to keep them from leaving a hole in their parents’ heart, the way that I have in mine.”

Lori Hunt, Trauma Prevention Coordinator at Parkview Hospital, joins Thompson to share these tragic stories and to raise awareness about distracted driving. Her message to students is simple: One text message is not worth crashing and dying.

“If you were killed in a car crash, how is that going to affect the people that are left behind? Since I’ve been doing this, I’ve been meeting these parents that are affected and are there to carry on and their lives change forever.”

For Thompson, getting the message across to students is a start, but she also says that parents must heed the same warning and lead by example.

“Please put the phone away. Parents, please be an example. Be an example, because I'm often hearing that parents are guilty as well and so we have to set an example as parents and stop doing it ourselves. Become a part of the cause and encourage our kids that it can wait. It can wait.”

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