Egg Harbor Township High School senior Daniel Vaccaro never texted while driving, he said, even before hearing how a distracted driver hit and killed 21-year-old Casey Feldman in 2009.
But after hearing Feldman’s father, attorney Joel Feldman, speak at a Family Career and Community Leaders of America conference in the fall, Vaccaro realized distracted driving is about more than texting.
The driver who hit Casey as she walked to her summer job in Ocean City wasn’t texting, Vaccaro said. He was reaching for something in his vehicle, and said he never saw her in front of him in a crosswalk.
Distractions can involve looking away from the road, physically moving while driving or even becoming too involved in thought.
“That’s why people shouldn’t drive when they are upset,” said Vaccaro, 17, who drives to school each day.
So he arranged for Feldman, of Springfield, Pa., to talk to students at his school earlier this month. He said he hopes the presentation encourages students to think more seriously about the issue.
“Mr. Feldman told me he was a regular person and used to distracted-drive, too,” Vaccaro said. “It took the death of his daughter, sadly, to realize he should stop doing it and spread awareness.”
The man who hit his daughter told Feldman he had never hurt anyone before.
“It only takes one second to hurt someone or take their life,” Vaccaro said.
Vaccaro lives with mother, Theresa Vaccaro, and plans to study nursing at Atlantic Cape Community College in the fall.
Casey Feldman’s photo is on posters throughout the region, urging drivers to watch for pedestrians. For more information on efforts to combat distracted driving, visit EndDD.org.
Sea Isle egg hunters strike gold
Mila Gain, 6, of Erma in Lower Township, Alli Hendricks, 11, of Ocean View in Dennis Township; and Madison Majors, 9, of Sea Isle City, were among those who discovered a golden egg and won extra prizes in the egg hunts during Sea Isle’s annual Easter Program.
Locals attend Livestrong forum
Sherri Sauvain, of Vineland, and Tom Interlante, of Millville, attended the 2013 Livestrong Assembly in Chicago last month. The two are Cumberland County leaders for the Livestrong Foundation and volunteer to help people affected by cancer.
Interlante is a 19-year advanced testicular cancer survivor, and Sauvain’s mother was diagnosed with endometrial cancer in 2011 and lymphoma in 2012. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com.
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