ROCHESTER, MN (FOX 47) --There was an unusual air of heaviness on the afternoon of September 22nd, at Rochester's Century High School. Students stood around two vehicles, covered by a plastic tarp, which covered the recreation of something that no one should ever experience. And then, a recreation of a tragedy unfolded before our eyes. In our midst was an accident caused not only by underage drinking but texting while driving as well.
The demonstration was put on by students, parents, faculty and community organizations.
One of the student actors, Jacob Powell, said although this was just a demonstration, he still has a difficult time comprehending how real the situation could be.
“It just shakes you up,” said Powell. “It's a feeling you're not use to. I don't know how to describe it. It's like shock on steroids. It's something.”
At first, to some, the recreation may have seemed pretentious. But as fire, emergency, and other official vehicles arrived on the scene, some students realized that, if they make a poor, split-second decision, this all could happen to them.
“FOX in the Morning” spoke with Judi Ketterling, one of the parent volunteers, who took on the role of a mother, coming upon the scene and finding her child had died.
“My hopes are obviously that the kids are going to take something away from this,” explained Ketterling. “I hope they just realize that the choices they make are going to impact a lot of people around them and people they have no idea who they are and can potentially ruin peoples lives and take people away that they loved.
Unfortunately, it can and it did happen. Two years ago, Matt Logan's daughter died; as a result of texting while driving. “She actually ran into the back of a school-bus on her first day of senior year at Byron High,” Logan stated.
Logan says that his grief will never go away. However, he hopes that his experience, combined with this dramatization, will help to prevent another local tragedy.
“A program like this, I think there's emotions involved right now,” Logan said. “They see the lights and sirens are going, the helicopters landing. It kind of brings their emotions into it, which then I try to attach it to my daughter and the real life tragedy that happened there,” explained Logan. “That distraction is deadly.”
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