Deborah Becker

"My son was the front seat passenger in the head-on car collision that caused Evan Lieberman’s death. A woman who had stopped at the scene called to tell me my son was injured, lying on the side of the road waiting for medical help. When I was 14, I took the call from a hospital where my older brother was being treated after another driver caused an accident. My brother died, forever impacting my family.

I am working with the Lieberman family on DORCS in the hope we can prevent other families from receiving the terrible call that tells them a beloved family member has been injured or killed in a collision that could so easily have been avoided. We want drivers, especially young drivers, to make better judgments and not allow themselves to be distracted by cell phones, texting, drowsiness, putting on make-up, or whatever else takes their attention away from driving for fateful and fatal seconds.

The driver of the car with Evan and my son said he picked up his head, saw the on-coming car and tried to turn back into his lane, but it was too late. My son and Evan, who both had been asleep, were jarred awake by the deafening sound of the crash and the pain of their injuries. Little or no time may exist for a driver to correct mistakes from distracted driving.

My son is doing well now, after two hospitalizations, three surgeries and quite a number of doctor and physical therapy visits. We live with the memory of him being raced to emergency surgery and know how close he came to being killed or crippled, probably spared by the front seat airbag that Evan did not have.

Evan would have had a wonderful life ahead of him, and it is a tragedy he was killed on his way to work on a beautiful summer day. We ask that people of all ages learn from Evan’s death, and the loss of so many others, and make a commitment to stop distracted driving.