Madison County students learn to ‘Hang Up and Drive’

During the week of Jan. 13 to 17, approximately 1,500 high school students in eight districts from Madison County were fortunate to hear Jacy Good and Steve Johnson, public speakers and advocates for phone-free roads. Phones are claiming 15 lives per day on United States roadways and injuring more than 1,000 lives every day.  It is time to reduce those numbers.

Jacy Good graduated from Muhlenberg College in May 2008. As she and her parents drove home after the graduation ceremony, a teenager – who was driving and talking on his cell phone – turned left through a red light, causing a fully loaded tractor-trailer to swerve and hit Jacy’s family station wagon head-on. Jacy’s parents were killed instantly. Jacy has no memory for two months following the accident, which is where Steve is able to fill the gaps in the story. Jacy was severely injured and went through two months of recovery in one hospital before moving to a rehabilitation hospital for two months. Jacy had to learn who she is, how to eat, how to read, and how to walk again. Since that time, Jacy has worked tirelessly to help enact distracted driving laws. She and Steve have been to 41 states to share their story.

Jacy and Steve told their story in a light-hearted and at the same time powerful way. Students and staff were engaged in the story and had a chance to ask them questions. Each student and staff who had the opportunity to hear the message walked away understanding the importance of not being a distracted driver. Jacy and Steve empowered students at the end by reminding them that they are responsible for what is happening in their lives and to be sure they are making good choices. As Jacy and Steve tell each group, “we all have the power to save lives, make the right decisions”.

A huge thank you to SADD National and the NYS Governor Traffic Safety Committee for providing Madison County schools with the opportunity to hear them speak and to the Madison County Sheriff’s Office STOP DWI Program for assisting in the coordination.

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