By Holly Pearson
On a night under a blanket of stars with the windows down, music blasting, one can feel invincible while driving. Young adults have the tendency to disregard the concept of mortality and take risks that feel appropriate with the fast pace of a young life. To jump in your car to rush to a friends house and go over the speed limit while not being constrained by a seatbelt can appear like a casual endeavor, not a fatal one. Adam London’s story powerfully displays the fatality in reckless, distracted driving and emphasizes why we should all promise to Adam to keep ourselves safe on the road.
On Tuesday night, November 13th, the Greek communities of Phi Sigma Sigma and Sigma Pi joined together to support an immensely important campaign. The Promise to Adam campaign honors the life of Adam London taken too soon in a fatal car accident in August of 2010. London was only 17 years old about to enter his senior year of high school when his car collided with a tree, with no seatbelt to save him. Adam’s mother, Dr. Barbara Spivak, told the Boston Globe, “I worried about his speeding, I did,’’ said Spivak. “Adam was a good, bright, loving kid. He loved his friends. He loved lacrosse. I never thought he would be dumb enough to get in his car, on a rainy night, on a treacherous, curvy road and do 50-60 miles an hour. Never. I think he made a tragic mistake and it cost him his life.’’
The silence was deafening in the packed room of the Dunn Conference Center as Howard London, previous Vice President of Academic Affairs at BSU, told the story of how he lost his son. Light can be found within the tragedy of London’s passing, through educating generations to come of the importance to drive responsibility as well as safely.
The parents of Adam London beg all drivers, especially young adults, “Promise us, please promise us, that you will wear a seat belt, that you won’t speed, that you won’t engage in risky behavior when you drive, that you will stop your friends from doing this. We cannot bear to see another family go through this grief.”
Members of Greek life, including myself, signed a pledge to Adam promising to:
1. Never to ride in a car without using a seatbelt
2. Never to drive too fast, because where I’m going I will be there, whether I’m 5 minutes early or fifty minutes late.
3. Never to drive after drinking, even the smallest amount, because I cannot understand how impaired I may be.
4. Never to drive after putting anything in my body that may limit my ability to think, understand and react.
5. Never to text while I drive, because the message is never more important than my life.
6. And, perhaps hardest of all, to stop my friends when they try to do any of the above. Take away their keys, call a cab; call for help. Whatever it takes.
I encourage all drivers to sign this pledge and stand with Adam along with his friends and family to drive for your safety.
Holly Pearson is the Editor-in-Chief for The Comment.