By Shayan Ahmad
Annually, LifeLines runs a mock car crash intended to show students what occurs during a traffic accident. This year, however, the group will not be running the simulation.
This is not because the group has an inability to run the mock crash, though. Rather, the group has chosen not to perform it out of respect to students who still feel the impact of the fatal car accident which occurred last year.
“In regards to why we are not doing the mock car crash when it is felt to be such an impactful event, is the fact that we have been informed that several members of the student body are still having quite a difficult time over what happened,” Rebekah Overbey, LifeLines sponsor and resource teacher, said via email. According to Overbey, the club does not believe the simulation would be sensitive to students who were close to the victims of last year’s accident, students Jordan Moss and Jordan Poirier.
“It came to our attention that relatives and close friends of the people who died are still being affected by the deaths,” Alec Rader, LifeLines vice president and junior, said. “We just decided that overall it wouldn’t be a good idea.”
In replacement of the mock crash, the group has scheduled two speakers to come to this school and lecture the student body. The two will both speak of their own personal experiences as warnings to the Junior Class and Senior Class.
“We are sponsoring two different guest speakers during the week before prom though; one for seniors (Adam Ritz) and one for juniors (Diveeta Thompson).” Overbey said.
According to Rader, Thompson’s son was killed in a car accident because he was texting while driving. Rader said he believes through listening to her story, students will truly understand the impact of their decisions.
“(The speakers) will provide some perspective for people and give them an insight to what can happen,” he said. “Things like that do happen, and hopefully this will remind them to keep safe.”
According to Chris Song, LifeLines member and junior, the speaker for the Senior Class will speak of a different kind of experience.
“(Ritz) is a former Carmel graduate who had a long history of drugs and alcohol but was able to turn his life around,” Song said. Song said he hopes the speech will be one which cautions students of the effects of their choices.
“We’re hoping he can give an insightful speech which lets students know how what they do now can lead to worse things,” he said. “That way students will know to make better choices in the future.”
Song said he thinks these speakers will be able to make up for the lost value of not conducting the annual crash simulation.
“Obviously we’re losing a little bit by not doing the simulation. It’s something I think has proved to be very successful, but out of respect it’s a smart move for us not to run it this year,” he said. “The speeches will give the same sort of effect, but won’t be insensitive to anyone.”
Rader said he also believes the effects of the speeches will be the best solution for all students.
“We can also keep students thinking about keeping safe over the summer,” he said.
To Overbey, the speakers will help LifeLines accomplish its main objective: to lead CHS students to making the best choices possible. “That is the bottom line: helping students make better choices for themselves and others – for it may save their lives and the lives of their friends and others.”