Orland High School's Every 15 Minutes

May 13, 2011 7:57 PM

Jill Elliott, daughter killed by a drunk driver says, "He said Rachel's gone.." Jill Elliott chokes through the words no parent ever wants to face.. Her daughter Rachel was killed by a drunk driver when she 18. Jill says, "Rachel was one of them. She was killed eight months after graduation from high school. She was a person i think a lot of the students can relate to."

In Rachel's senior year at Orland High.. she took part in the 'Every 15 Minutes' program put on by the CHP.. A two day event that involves a mock drunk driving crash and a memorial service the following day.. Rachel played the role of someone killed in that mock drunk driving scene.. She was asked to write a good-bye letter to her parents for the memorial.. like the students did Friday, and her parents were asked to write a mock obituary for their beloved daughter.. Little did they know this would soon become a reality.. "Our whole world was turned upside down," Jill says.

Because Rachel was such a strong advocate against drunk driving, and was killed by a drunk driver.. Her parents felt it was the only thing they could do to pass on her message.. Jill says, "I'm here today because i just don't want anybody in this room to ever wake up and find out that they maimed or killed an innocent person because of their choice to drink and drive."

Rachel's message and the realism of the 'Every 15 Minutes' program touched many of the students sitting in that gym. Orland High Junior Jessica Miccio says, "It was really sad especially to see actual stories and people knowing.." Deanna Pedro says, "I never was for it before, but now hearing people's stories I really want to let people know that it's not right.." Jill says, "I want them to come away knowing that they have the power to make a difference.."


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