A mother from Kansas has shared the heartbreaking story of her daughter who died in a car crash while using her phone, in order to warn others not to do the same.
Jacque Tierce shared the story of her 22-year-old daughter, Danielle Delgado Garcia, who died after the car she was driving rear-ended a semi-truck on her way to work.
It’s believed the accident occurred while Danielle was texting her daycare provider, who was looking after Danielle’s three-year-old son at the time.
Jacque received a phone call from Danielle’s co-worker, expressing concern for the young mum as she was late for work and wasn’t answering her phone.
All because of texting while driving, a 22-year-old’s life is cut short – a son loses his mom and a mom loses her daughter. #PBFDKS Read Jacque Tierce’s story – https://t.co/h2eiNcOv8N pic.twitter.com/cW9jRXudso
— KDOT (@KDOTHQ) September 19, 2018
Jacque got a call from the Kansas Highway Patrol, who informed her of what had happened. She went straight to the hospital just as Danielle was arriving in an ambulance, awake and able to speak.
In her blog post for Kansas Department of Transportation, Jacque said:
I arrived just as they were taking her out of the ambulance and was informed they would be airlifting her to Wichita.
Danielle was awake and able to talk to me. Words I will never forget as long as I live. ‘Mom,’ she said in the most agonizing voice I’ve ever heard, ‘It hurts so bad Mom. My stomach hurt so bad.’ [sic]
I got to tell her I loved her and squeeze her hand before she went out again and was loaded into the helicopter.
Jacque and her fiancé drove the two-hour trip to the hospital in Wichita, where Danielle was scheduled to have surgery.
Sadly, Danielle died from her injuries.
Jacque is now using her daughter’s story to urge others not to use their phone while driving.
As we planned for her funeral, the pastor conducting her service asked us, ‘do you want me to say something about texting and driving during the funeral? I will do it in a tactful way.’
After a few minutes of contemplation, we all agreed that it should be addressed. If we could save one person from the heartache that we are experiencing, then we needed to do that.
Jacque and her family set up the Facebook page DoitforDanielle to share information about the dangers of texting while driving.
Do you know that 4.6 seconds is the average time it takes to read or send a text? Do you also know that in those 4.6 seconds driving at highway speed, you can travel the length of a football field and a half? [sic]
In my daughter’s case, 4.6 seconds cost her her life. She didn’t even brake for the semi because she didn’t see it. What if she would have injured the truck driver, another driver, or a pedestrian?
No text message or any other driver distraction is worth any of it!! Pull over if it’s that important and can’t wait!
Jacque has since been giving talks to young people about the dangers of using your phone while driving, and hopes her story will help others in the future.
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Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.