Marianna Woman Starts a Campaign To Stop Texting And Driving

On Wednesday, September 26, Angela Clark's life changed forever. And it happened in a split second.

"By the time he realized he was about to rear end someone, it was too late" Clark said, recounting the accident that claimed the life of her stepfather, Allen Vasquez.

Vasquez, was texting while driving his van on Highway 73. Authorities said he caused the four car crash that claimed his life.

"He had a habit of texting and driving, so that was the first thing that came to my mind" Clark said. "So it kind of became by mission to find the cell phone."

She found the cell phone, but that was only the beginning of her mission.

"She wanted to share with the community how it had impacted her family. And really, not just her family, but the other families that knew him" said Jackson County Sheriff, Lou Roberts.

Clark parked Vasquez's van, along with signs that read "Texting and Driving Kills" on the front lawn of the Jackson County Sheriff's Office.

"Texting and driving- it kills. You can be a 16 year old inexperienced driver, or a 49 year old experienced driver. You're not invincible. It doesn't discriminate" Clark said.

Deadly car wrecks stemming from texting and driving have been on the rise. Recently, Alabama made the practice illegal and the Florida legislature has been considering doing the same.

"Often we get calls from the public about an impaired driver" Roberts explained. "But when officers stop them, they realize they're not impaired by alcohol or drugs but that their driving was impaired because they were texting or talking on the phone."

Clark said she hoped the display would help people change a dangerous behavior.

"I don't want anybody else to ever go through this" Clark tearfully told us. "There are more important things in life than responding to a text message. If you feel the need to respond to a text message, pull off the road. You could end up like my dad."

Both Clark and Roberts said they hoped to see the campaign spread beyond Jackson County. Roberts said he may even move the van to other locations to gain more exposure.

If you would like to join Angela Clark's crusade, she can be contacted by email at, unconfused4now@yahoo.com


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