Sunday, December 9, 2012

Change a Story

I met Derrick Moore in middle school. We were mathletes, amateur basketball players, and between the years of 1994 and 2001 sat across the lunch table from one another more times than I care to count.

He’s a good guy and a good friend.

December 1996, Derrick’s father, Ted Moore, went out for a morning run and he was killed by a drunk driver.

On the anniversary of his father’s passing, Derrick made a post on Facebook reminding everyone not to drink and drive. A couple days later he sent me a message, asking if I might blog a similar message.

On one hand, I wasn’t sure what to do. I’m not in the business of blogging PSAs, and if I’m going to be completely honest, I didn’t know Derrick’s father all that well.

On the other hand, screw it, I knew exactly what to do.

No, I didn’t know Ted Moore very well. But from what I had observed, he was a good father and from what I’ve heard and read since his passing, he was a great teacher (a math professor) and a better man. People like that don’t deserve to have their stories ended early. And they don’t deserve to be forgotten.

So I make this post in tribute to him.

And in the midst of that tribute, let’s not make any mistakes about Derrick. He went on to be a high honors student and a varsity athlete in high school. Years later, he graduated from Cornell Law. He’s not only a survivor. He’s a success story. From what I can tell his mother and younger sister have done quite well for themselves as well.

With this post I look up to my old friend and his family, and I am proud to share their message. A message I wish I didn’t have to share, but if I affect one reader’s thought process, then perhaps I’ll have contributed to a legacy befitting a 13-year-old boy’s father, stolen from his family too soon.

Drink responsibly.

Drive responsibly.

Don’t be afraid to call a cab. Your car will still be there in the morning.

Do the right thing. You might save a life. You might change a whole story.

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