Back in 2017, Melinda McDonald had almost arrived back home in Hopkins County from a Christmas shopping trip when her car was suddenly struck from behind by an intoxicated driver. Melinda remembers little from the impact except the sensation of the car rolling and anxiously hoping for the safety of her infant granddaughter who was in a car seat behind her. Soon , the realization came that her daughter and fiance were nowhere to be seen, apparently thrown from the car. Amidst the fear and confusion, good samaritans began stopping to assist, and somebody called 911. The four family members were transported to area hospitals. For months following surgery, Melinda’s daughter was unable to perform even the simplest tasks in caring for her child. The entire McDonald family had become surviving victims of a drunk and drugged driver.
Melinda and MADD Program Director Beth Powell were guests on the KSST Good Morning Show with Enola Gay, to invite the public to walk with them at the Mothers Against Drunk Driving Walk on Saturday September 29, 2018 at 8pm. Please plan to arrive earlier and bring your families and friends. Starting at 6pm, there will be children’s fun and educational activities, music, food and friendly fellowship near the Pumpkin Patch setting. Dress in costume if you would like to. Meet the McDonald family and other survivors of drunk driving crashes and hear their stories amidst a “celebration of life” atmosphere.
According to Powell who directs MADD programs in a 23-county region, there were 92 drunk driving crashes in the KSST listening area during 2017. These are referred to as “crashes” and not “accidents” because it is no accident when a drinking-impaired driver put the keys in the ignition and directs his or her vehicle onto a public roadway, putting passengers, pedestrians and other drivers in danger. It is a decision they make, and too often the consequences are far-reaching for driver and victims. 2018 is the 10th anniversary of the local Walk Like Madd event in Sulphur Springs. Your participation is important. It is hoped you will join in and walk for those who no longer can, and alongside those who are learning to walk again. Find out more at madd.org.