Greg Neal trembled, sweated and held back the tears welled in his eyes as he walked into the emergency room at Children’s Hospital to see his teenage daughter on Tuesday. Olivia Neal, a senior at Liberty High School and sweeper in the girls varsity soccer team, was lying in a bed, paralyzed from the waist down, after a drunk driver crashed into her car on Road 36. Fortunately, for the Neals, it was all part of a dramatic recreation for the Every 15 Minutes program hosted by Liberty High School.
But for many Americans, that’s not the case. Every 90 seconds, someone is injured in a drunk driving accident, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, a national nonprofit organization which advocates for legislation to prevent drunk driving and underage drinking.
Drunk driving has also hit the Neals close to home. Greg’s niece was killed by a drunk driver 20 years ago and Olivia’s friend was injured in a car accident caused by a drunk driver as she was leaving campus a few weeks ago, the Gregs said.
“It was pretty traumatic,” Greg said of his ER visit with his daughter. “I thought I was going to pass out. I’m still sweating, but it’s for a good cause. I’m glad she’s doing it. I’m proud of her.” ...