Girlfriend’s Final Texts a Warning on Distracted Driving
(QUEBEC, Canada) — A young Canadian man is hoping the heart-wrenching final text message conversation he had with his girlfriend before she died can serve as a reminder of the dangers of distracted driving.
Mathieu Fortin has posted the final text messages he and his girlfriend, Emy Brochu, 20, sent each other while she was driving, right before the car she was in crashed Jan. 18, killing her. On a memorial Facebook page he titled “Share this if it touches you! I love you Emy xoxo,” Fortin posted the texts, along with pleas that his friends think twice before using a cellphone while behind the wheel.
The pair were texting each other while she drove to class, he wrote on the Facebook page. Her final message to him read, translated from French, “I love you too and I’ll try to make you happy.”
“I have a meeting at 12:30,” he responded, “I would have liked to hear your beautiful voice before but…we’ll talk tonight before 6:00…good day at school bb and I kiss you all over :).”
A little while later, when she still hadn’t responded, he texted again, asking if everything was okay, writing “Is all well my heart?” and “I’m a little worried here.”
The police investigation showed that cellphone use was a factor in the crash, Fortin writes, adding that the irony of the final texts still breaks his heart.
“How can a text message or email be more urgent than life?” Fortin of Victoriaville, Quebec, writes, according to a translation from French. “At what point does using your phone become more important than the people you love?”
Cellphone use — either texting or talking on the phone — is involved in 24 percent of all vehicle crashes, according to the National Safety Council.
“It’s important to remember that most cellphone communications require two parties,” David Teater with the National Safety Council told ABC News. “It takes two to text, so you have a responsibility not to participate in such risky behavior. It’s almost like letting a friend leave a bar drunk and get behind the wheel.”
“If something were to happen, if someone were to get killed, can you imagine going through life knowing you were on the phone with them when that happened?” Teater said.
On the Facebook page, Fortin writes that he feels guilty about Brochu’s death, and that he hopes people remember her when they think about picking up the phone while driving.
“It could be a child crossing the street while you’re staring at your phone,” Fortin writes, “THINK ABOUT IT!”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio