Lauren Winborne of Georgia is not your average woman. After losing both her senior prom date and a college boyfriend to fatal car accidents, she dedicated her life to speaking to teen students about their age groups’ leading cause of death: car accidents.
Winborne visited Leesville Road High School on March 22, where a large crowd eagerly awaited her.
Winborne began her speech with an alarming statistic: in the War on Terror thus far 5,000 Americans have lost their lives. In the exact same period of time, more than 40,000 teenagers have died from preventable auto accidents.
In fact, out of all the teenage accidents noted, 70% of them could have been prevented by lowering speeds or simply wearing a seatbelt.
Winborne also made sure to point out that the kids that were dying in these wrecks were not driving around plastered at 3 in the morning; many of them were honors students, athletes, and collge-bound kids. For example, two students Winborne focused on were Michael Heykoop and Brian Elsworth, two star athletes at their school whose lives came to a sudden stop.
The boys, who were late to a basketball game were, driving at high speeds when their vehicle was involved in an accident, both of them died. The students would have survived the crash if they had been wearing their seatbelts.
After solidifying her point on seatbelt usage, Winborne turned over the seminar to Brent Jayes, a Leesville father whose life has also been affected by car wrecks.
On August 7, 1999 Jayes lost his 18-year old daughter Christina to a horrifying wreck of which she was the only casualty.
Overall, Winborne’s message was clear: drive carefully and safely and always buckle up, because a car wreck not only affects the life of the person involved, it also crushes family members, friends, and the entire community.