Thursday, April 30, 2009

Every Fifteen Minutes

Yesterday I attended B's funeral. On the way there, my stomach felt uneasy, I was dreading what would take place. The casket was there, but closed. First there was a video, slideshow of the previous day's events. Including the driver being booked into jail, followed by her sentencing of 8 to 20 years in prison, Seeing the doctor tell a father his son had died. All of the "walking dead," those who were portrayed as dying every 15 minutes, were shown with gray paint and no expression on their face, as well as their headstone. That was hard to see B with such a sullen look. As you all know, her smile just lights up her whole face, and her eyes twinkle. The walking dead entered the room and put a flower on the casket. It was difficult to see her, and not have any acknowledgement from her, as she was "dead." Some of the dead's parents read a letter of what they wished they had told their children. Also some of the dead read a letter of what they wanted to tell their parents and family. I was hoping B wasn't going to be one of them, as I knew that I would not have been able to keep it together. Then a lady told the story of her daughter who was killed by a drunk driver at age 22. All those who were the first on the accident scene were asked to stand, then anyone who had an immediate family member die in the event, then anyone whose friend died, and then anyone who had a friend whose friend died. Of course the whole audience was standing at that time. The point never affects just one person. At the end of the funeral we were able to reunite with the dead.

I am so glad it was not real. Although I only got a glimpse of what it would be like, I think I understand a little more how it would be to lose someone. Awful! Like I said earlier, it was more about how it would be to lose someone rather than the drinking and driving issue. But I think for those who drink it was probably pretty effective. It bothered me a little that they kept saying it was a choice to get behind the wheel. I think it is more a choice to take a drink, but I guess that depends on where you are coming from.

I liked what thorkgal said about the way we all make ripples in others' lives. So true.

It was a very interesting experience for me, but also for B. She has told us about what she learned, and will hopefully continue to tell others about not only the importance of not drinking and driving, but of making stupid choices such as not wearing a seatbelt, driving too fast, and others. She had to read her own obituary as part of the program and said that was really difficult. We also received her letter she wrote to us, and she the one we wrote to her. Overall, a good experience, but difficult all the same.

Good Things:

1. Reunions

2. Having everyone at dinner

3. saying "I love you"

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Every Fifteen Minutes

Sorry for any undue stress I have caused you. I assumed the heading and the previous post was warning enough. I am grateful that each of you care. And your shock does prove the point that B played a very important role in each of our lives. More to come tomorrow as we attend the funeral.

Every Fifteen Minutes

B died today of a result of a car accident involving a drunk driver. It seems strange knowing she won't come home from school today. It seems everywhere I look I see a reminder of her. Her shoes in the middle of the floor, a dishwasher flashing washed, it was her turn to empty it, her camp permission slip that I have asked at least a dozen times be put away, no call from her phone asking to be picked up, no text telling me how she did on her math test. No smile with sparkling eyes, not even rolling of eyes when I ask her to do something, An empty place at the table... We will miss her!
Even though I knew this was going to happen, and we never know when death will be our turn, it has led to some serious thought. I know I will get to see her again tomorrow, but what if it were real life, as so many have faced. What if this were real? How would I face it? What would I do? I recently lost a very good friend, and think of her often. But to miss someone you are used to seeing everyday? My hearts goes out to those who have suffered such a loss. To hear someone say, "I heard what happened I am sorry for your loss, I will be at the funeral," what do you say?
Although this is a lesson on the consequences of drinking and driving, which I hope will never have an impact on my life, it has gone much deeper than that for me. Would I be ready to die if it were me? Would I be happy knowing I spent my time wisely with the person who died? Did I say I loved them often enough? Fortunately the we often end our phone conversations or goodbyes with an "I love You." Did we part on good terms? So many questions and thoughts. I do know for sure that if B were to really die, we would have a very empty place in our hearts and home.
Good things:
1. the plan of salvation
2. Knowing I said I love You
3. Sealing power

Monday, April 27, 2009

Residents may see ambulances, fire trucks and even a hearse at the Churchill County Fairgrounds Tuesday, but there is no reason to be alarmed, said De Vere Karlson, chief juvenile probation officer. The appearance of an emergency situation is a part of the national “Every 15 Minutes” event where students witness a mock car crash in an effort to fight drunk driving.“In the United States, statistically, unfortunately, every 15 minutes someone dies due to a drunk driver,” Karlson said.The event begins with a mock scene of a graphic car crash caused by a student driving drunk, Karlson said. Students from Churchill County High School will watch the scene beginning with the 911 call and ending with the removal of one or more bodies from the car.“It’s not real and you know it, but it’s the chance that it could happen,” said 18-year-old Meagan Winder, who helped plan the event.Afterwards the majority of students return to classes, but the 16 students playing out the scenario continue for the rest of the day, along with their parents Karlson said. Based on their roles, students go to the emergency room, the police station or mortuary. Karlson said it’s all filmed, so the entire student body can witness the various scenes at the mock funeral to be held during an assembly at CCHS on Wednesday morning. Before the funeral, however, the 16 students and their parents go to separate retreats to experience a mourning process, Karlson said.“We have kids break down and cry,” Karlson said. “Part of the retreat is that they write their parents a letter about how they died. It’s life-affecting for some kids.”Karlson said the experience is also dramatic for students who witness the scenes and videos because of how realistic they are. Karlson said planning began last September, and about 20 agencies are involved. She said, this year, a Hollywood make-up artist is even flying in to apply moulage simulating injuries.“We don’t make it so it’s gory, but it looks real enough so it gets the kids’ attention,” Karlson said.Karlson said DUIs drop every year they hold the event and they hope this year will have an even greater impact on students.“I hope it makes people realize that it could happen,” Winder said. “They shouldn’t throw their lives away over a drink.”

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Back to Real Life

We are back from vacation, and had a wonderful time. This week has been busy, busy, with jetlag, getting a dandy cold, stake auxiliary meetings today, a dance tonight, ward conference tomorrow, add in 3 baseball games, a soccer, game, and the regular. So...I will be getting some pictures up soon, and a brief update of what we did. Some of the highlights were of course the food, meeting someone whom Greg knew on his mission, and just seeing all there was to see. We did lots of walking, and ate lots of gelato. What a great time we had!

Good things:
1. Vacationing with your family
2. Coming home to your own bed
3. Missing what or who is at home

Thursday, April 2, 2009


I could never be the presidents wife! I am very active in the school system in our community, and have always been since my children started school. I have served on various committees, and been active in PTO. I believe this is what eventually led g to be on the school board. It is difficult to sit back and watch things happen when you feel someone needs to step forward and make a difference. I am in no way saying we make a difference, but we kind of feel like you can't sit back and complain if you aren't willing to do something about it.
That being said, G receives criticism all the time about what he said or did as a member of the school board. I often want to say lots about what is really going on, or how the story really went, etc. But try to most of the time keep my mouth shut, exception of being among friends. (sorry guys, I gotta vent somewhere.) But this morning I just could not control that urge to speak up and defend my husband. It happened at a PIC meeting.
And unfortunately, I probably didn't do it very adequately or effectively. What I really wanted and meant to say was this...
On a seven member board, he is the only one who currently has children in the school system. He is looking out for what is best for his children, but their are about 2500 other children just like his. He does know what goes on in the schools, he goes to parent teacher conference, back to school nights, sport events, PTO's, musical events, drama events, and also committee meetings, and school board meetings. All of those children are not the exact same as his, but he tries his best to do what is best for the majority of the students, and what will improve the school system, and hopefully eventually make responsible citizens out of these students.
Okay, that should suffice my urge for at least a little while. Thanks for listening.
Good things
1. short meetings
2. people who stand up for what they believe (that is why you ran again)
3. 6 days to Italy