An event in Papillion Saturday brought awareness to the dangers of distracted driving in a fun and interactive way.
Organizers put on Time 2 Drive at the Tara Plaza, where 14-year old Molly Dean got behind the wheel of a driving simulator to test her driving skills while texting. “It’s really distracting and I don't know how people text full messages while their driving 'cause even texting one word was difficult."
Dean ended up crashing into a truck in a matter of minutes. “I think it’s stupid to put yourself in danger like that for a message that can wait 10 minutes.”
That is exactly the message organizers want young teens and adults to walk away with. Making drivers think twice before getting in a vehicle without being safe and responsible.
Rob Reynolds came and spoke to the crowd about Cady, his 16-year-old daughter. In 2007, Cady was hit and killed by a young driver who ran a red light at 132nd and West Center due to distracted driving.
“I knew she was late for curfew and I started calling her phone around 11 p.m. and a cop finally answered the phone. That's when we found out what happened and she died six hours later.”
Reynolds is turning heartache into purpose. He started Alliance For Safer Teen Driving a year after Cady's death to educate teenagers about the dangers of distracted driving.
Since 2008, he's shared his daughter's story with more than 10,000 teens. “In a small way it gives meaning to what her life could have been. It doesn't replace the loss of a child, it can't ever do that, but I do feel her ideals and what she stood for is living on through this organization.”
Saturday's event was sponsored by several insurance groups and the Tara Plaza Association.