The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

MADD myths debunked on TR

By La Vista Palmes/reporter

TR students learned a few common myths about Mothers Against Drunk Driving March 3.

Victim services specialist Catalina Laviada said the group is not anti-drinking.MADD copy

“MADD is not against responsible consumption of alcohol by adults over the age of 21,” she said. “They simply encourage everyone to know their limits, plan ahead and have a designated driver.”

A second guest speaker, Jonathan Swiatocha, agreed with Laviada. A drunken driver victim, he has joined the MADD movement and is dedicating his life to both the victims of driving while intoxicated as well as participants.

Swiatocha was 10 years old when he became a DWI victim. He said he was in a coma and on a breathing machine for quite some time before regaining consciousness and realizing he was paralyzed from the waist down. The other victim in this accident, a young woman who was 7 months pregnant, was not as fortunate.

The last victim/perpetrator was a young underage driver who fled the scene and was later turned in by his father, Swiatocha said. He did not serve any jail time for this incident, only to be sentenced later to 20 years in prison for a different DWI.

“DWI occurrences affect the whole community,” he said. “Every 28 minutes, people die as a result of DWI offenders. Our mission is to end drunken driving. What I want to be remembered for when I leave this earth is that I made an impact on society with my actions or my words.”

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