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A well written letter to the editor in a recent Virginia Pilot talked about the loss of young lives in the context of the recent Virginia Tech tragedy.

No words can comfort a parent who has lost a child. That is probably one of the hardest and most unnatural types of grief in the world. The author noted that the leading cause of death in young people around the world is traffic injuries. In the United States each year 40,000 deaths occur because of automobile accidents and forty percent of those deaths are related to alcohol use. These 40,000 deaths do not even take into account mere injuries in vehicular accidents.

The editorial letter noted that on average forty-three Americans were killed by drunk drivers everyday. This terrible killer on our roads is easier to profile than the shooter at Virginia Tech. Very typically the impaired driver is a young man ages 18-20. Crashes are much more likely to occur with intoxicated young people driving than older people. I am sure that each of us has known someone who has been killed by a drunk driver. I remember several young students from Norfolk/Virginia Beach Virginia who were killed either at graduation time or on first going to their college campuses. It is all together too common and terribly sad. You can learn more about preventing underage drinking and driving by contacting organizations like MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), whose website is

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