"W8 2 TXT" campaign urges students to focus on road, not phone - WNCT

"W8 2 TXT" campaign urges students to focus on road, not phone

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GREENVILLE, N.C. -

A promising high school senior died in a tragic crash two years ago.

Now, her mother is telling her story and hoping it will inspire change.

In 2011, 18-year-old Sarah Edwards died instantly. Her car smashed into a log truck in Beaufort County.

At the time of the crash, investigators say Sarah read a simple text that was sent from a boyfriend. He told her he didn't know what he'd do without her.

"She was beautiful. Full of life. Loved music, hanging out. Loved taking her picture, lord that child just loved to have her picture made. Just a typical teenager," said Sarah's mother, Tracy O'Carroll.

With just one incoming text message Sarah's life was over. Troopers found her phone, shattered into pieces along the road.

"The text message came in at 3:42pm. She hit the truck at 3:42pm. She never looked up," said O'Carroll.

O'Carroll should have been helping her daughter pick out a prom dress. Instead she was picking out a casket.

"No parent wants to visit the morgue and see their child lay there lifeless and there's nothing you can do," said O'Carroll.

O'Carroll is teaming up with the North Carolina Highway Patrol and local Subway restaurants for the "W8 2 TXT" safe driver campaign. She shared Sarah's story with hundreds of DH Conley High School students Wednesday.

"They see the pictures that we show when we do the events and the message that we bring and hopefully it sinks in." said Highway Patrol trooper, Doug Coley.

A tragic chain of events may have just turned out to be Sarah Edwards calling. Her mother says her daughter always wanted to make a difference.

"In a tragic way, Sarah is famous because Sarah is saving lives now and maybe that's what God wanted," said O'Carroll.

We may never know just how many lives Sarah's story has saved. And for her mother, that's okay.

High school students can also do an online pledge not to text and drive. The schools with the most participants will get a $500 dollar grant from Subway.

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