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Don’t drink and drive

Date: 1/3/2014

David (Anzalotti) Laduzenski, my cousin, at age 29, was killed over two years ago by a driver convicted of possession of cocaine, and drunk driving.

Our family and David have strong local roots in Springfield, Chicopee, and West Springfield and a finance and friends in metro Boston as well as throughout the Commonwealth. The loss was not only tragic, it is devastating to our family and that of the defendant.

While “justice” was somewhat served by the conviction of the defendant which was meticulously covered by Buffy Spencer and others from the Republican, the conviction brings no solace to the family as we lost a happy, productive, well educated contributing athlete, outdoorsman, engineer, and simply a greet young man in the prime of his life.

This is the heaviest drinking and enhanced drug taking season, while at the same time many of us are making positive resolutions as we approach the new year.

If you have a drinking or drug problem, or if you are a friend, relative or business owner where these activities occur, maybe each of you would do something, anything to stop the carnage.

How about a resolution of drinking at home for celebration if you are a lone driver or having a designated driver or even calling the police to get a ride to someplace where your drinking or drugs won’t hurt others or their families?

If the defendant in the death of David Laduzenski had such intervention, undoubtedly hundreds of people and families, of both the deceased and the convicted would be having happier holidays.

If you or the abuser of alcohol or drugs, their families or friends or a barkeeper can not foresee or appreciate the potential loss of life end such devastation, then how about having you or your families thinking about many thousands of dollars it costs to hire a lawyer ($3,000-$10,000 or more), or explain why daddy, mommy or a relative lost his job and is currently serving time in jail? Or better yet, how about thinking about carrying this mental burden for the rest of your life, and those who still love you carrying the load? How about addressing your demons and bad habits now as well as in the new year?

If only everyone would make a 2014 resolution to avoid illegal drugs and alcohol while driving and otherwise, and helping those who do drink drug, and drive, wouldn't it quickly become a better and safer society for all of us – both law abiding or those on the edge?

It’s up to each and every one of us to think about these tragedies, but also to intervene as concerned citizens and family to reduce the carnage and heartache. If you know a drug or alcohol abuser, please join the thousands of families who have experienced the sorrow in helping those with problems to help themselves and not placing every one of us in harm and sorrow’s way.

Victor M. Anop