Students place DUI memorials on campus to remember victims

By Ashley Ramirez

LOGOS STAFF WRITER

A psychology class has placed memorials called descansos around the University of the Incarnate Word campus to remind people about the deaths due to driving under the influence.

Just before spring break, Dr. Maria Felix-Ortiz’s Drug Use Prevention and Intervention class gathered on Dubuis Lawn for a descanso installation ceremony where District Attorney General Susan Reed and others spoke about the consequences of DUI,

remembered lives lost to drunk drivers, and tips were given on staying safe on the roads.

Reed said a first DUI ticket for a person can cost up to $14,000 after all the expenses and court fees are over.

“This subject is close to my heart because I’ve seen all the consequences that happen around me because of drunk driving,” Reed said.

It’s estimated more than 1,000 people a year die – most of them victims – due to someone else drunk at the wheel in Texas. Father Tom Dymowski, the campus chaplain, gave a prayer and sprinkled holy water for those who lost their lives to drunk drivers.

Dr. Louis J. Agnese Jr., UIW’s president, emphasized it’s not safe to drive drunk. He was young once, Agnese said, so he knows it can be hard to find a designated driver at times.

“Now that I’m older I always have a driver even when I only have one drink,” Agnese said.

A tearful mother at the event said she lost her daughter to a drunk wrong-way driver. She said her daughter was a sophomore in college and aspired to be a teacher when she graduated. But the mother said she’ll never get to see her daughter graduate or get married one day all because a woman drove while intoxicated. The woman who is responsible for killing her daughter died in the crash, too, so she never got to face the person who is the reason why her child is not with her today, she said.

“I’ll never get to hold a grandchild all because my daughter is no longer alive,” the mother said.

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