OPELIKA, Ala.- Loretta Robinson said this time of year is very tough for her.
Back in 2011, she lost her son, Justin to a drunk driver. The next year, she lost her godsons Marlon and Najee Brown to a drunk driver. She said it changed the fabric of her whole family.
“It’s so preventable,” Robinson said. “I know for me, just being able to think about getting up and moving on, just doing the daily, necessary things was a struggle and it sometimes still is. I think the hardest part is right now because you miss them so bad and you see other people giving thanks, and your heart is still broken.”
(L to R: Justin Walker (son), Najee Brown (godson) and Marlon Brown (godson)
She said that the pain does not go away and that it is never easy to say a person’s name in the past tense. She hopes that people have fun this holiday, but urges them to not drink and drive, adding that it is very preventable due to all of the options for safe driving at your disposal (uber, etc).
“Be responsible and think of the kind of pain it can inflict on a family or even your family,” Robinson said. “I think most people think that it wouldn’t be them or it couldn’t be them until it is them.”
While driving this Thanksgiving, police officers urge folks to be prepared.
“Just have patience,” Captain Bobby Kilgore of the Opelika Police Department said. “You know there is going to be a lot more traffic on the road than normally. It will take you a lot longer to get where you need to go than normally. So leave a little early and have patience. Expect everybody to be just as tired and just as frustrated as you are and work together.”