The Callahan Report: Death of an Innocent

21 October 1998

I went to a party, Mom, I remembered what you said. 
You told me not to drink, Mom, so I drank soda instead 
I really felt proud inside, Mom, the way you said I would. 
I didn't drink and drive, Mom, even though the others said I should. 

I know I did the right thing, Mom, I know you are always right. 
Now the party is finally ending, Mom, as everyone is driving out of sight. 
As I got into my car, Mom, I knew I'd get home in one piece.    
Because of the way you raised me, so responsible and sweet.  
  
I started to drive away, Mom, but as I pulled out into the road,    
the other car didn't see me, Mom, and hit me like a load.    
As I lay there on the pavement, Mom, I hear the policeman say,    
the other guy is drunk, Mom, and now I'm the one who will pay.    

I'm lying here dying, Mom.. I wish you'd get here soon.    
How could this happen to me, Mom? My life just burst like a  balloon.    
There is blood all around me, Mom, and most of it is mine.    
I hear the medic say, Mom, I'll die in a short time.    

I just wanted to tell you, Mom, I swear I didn't drink.    
It was the others, Mom. The others didn't think.    
He was probably at the same party as I.    
The only difference is, he drank and I will die.  
  
Why do people drink, Mom? It can ruin your whole life.    
I'm feeling sharp pains now. Pains just like a knife.    
The guy who hit me is walking, Mom, and I don't think it's fair.    
I'm lying here dying and all he can do is stare.    

Tell my brother not to cry, Mom. Tell Daddy to be brave.   
 And when I go to heaven, Mom, put "Daddy's Girl" on my grave.    
Someone should have told him, Mom, not to drink and drive.    
If only they had told him, Mom, I would still be alive.   
 
My breath is getting shorter, Mom. I'm becoming very scared.    
Please don't cry for me, Mom. When I needed you, you were always there.   
 I have one last question, Mom, before I say good bye.    
I didn't drink and drive, so why am I the one to die?   

The author of the preceding poem is unknown. It was provided to me by my eighteen-year-old daughter. It makes me sad. It makes me proud.

Please don't drink and drive

Terry Callahan
Motorsports Editor, The Auto Channel
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