Polk County family speaks after son killed by drunk driver - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Polk County family speaks after son killed by drunk driver

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POLK COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

A Polk County family is urging people to stay off the roads if they've been drinking this Halloween weekend.

3-year-old Brady Singleton was killed in April of 2008 by a drunk driver in Cherokee County, North Carolina.

Previous story: Two Arrested in ATV Hit and Run

His parents spoke publicly for the first time on Saturday to prevent this from happening to someone else.

A picture of Brady taken the day before he was killed by a drunk driver means the world to his parents.

"We were devastated and still are. Just hope that everyone can realize the importance of not drinking and driving," Ron Singleton, Brady's father said.

Investigators said the toddler was riding an ATV with his grandfather when a truck hit them and sent them down an embankment in Cherokee County, North Carolina.

They said the 3 year old landed in a shallow creek with the ATV on top of him. His grandfather was knocked unconscious, but survived.

Police say the driver was intoxicated and took off.

"If we can help some other family. If this event could make people more aware, that's our purpose," Shirley Singleton, Brady's mother said.

This Halloween weekend, multiple law enforcement agencies are cracking down on drunk driving.

One sobriety checkpoint they set up was on Highway 64 in Polk County on Saturday. They want to make sure no other family has to experience heartbreak.

"We want people to be safe. We want people to get from point a to point b and then return back home. The most important thing is for these people to get back home to their families, to their loved ones and be safe while they're doing it," Lt. Carey Hixson of the Tennessee Highway Patrol said.

The Singleton family said the driver of the truck is behind bars, but that hasn't eased their pain. They hope Brady's story will make people think twice before getting behind the wheel drunk.

"Time doesn't change anything. We will heal when we see him again," Singleton said.

The THP said four people were killed on Halloween night from 2013 to 2015. Two of those crashes involved drunk drivers.

The following are some safety tips for drivers, parents, and and children:

Tips for Motorists

  • Slow down. Watch for children walking on roads, medians and curbs.
  • Be extra alert when pulling in and out of driveways.
  • Be especially alert for children darting out from between parked vehicles and from behind bushes and shrubs. They’re excited and may not be paying attention.
  • Do not pass other vehicles that have stopped in the roadway. They could be dropping off children.
  • If you are driving to a Halloween party, put your mask on after you park the car.
  • Never drink and drive – tonight or any night. If you are partying, designate a driver.

Tips for Parents

  • Adults should accompany children at all times and supervise their "trick or treat" activities.
  • Teach children to "stop, look left-right-left, and listen" before they cross the street.
  • Instruct children to stay on sidewalks and to cross only at corners or crosswalks.
  • Use a flashlight and wear retro-reflective strips or patches on your clothing or costume to be more visible to motorists.
  • Be certain that the mask does not obstruct vision or hearing.
  • Ensure that costumes do not impede walking or driving ability.

Tips for Pedestrians (children and adults)

  • Require children to wear retro-reflective materials and carry a flashlight at dawn and dusk and in other low-light situations, such as rainy or foggy weather.
  • Before crossing a street, stop at the curb or edge of the road and look left, right and left again to be sure no cars are coming. Continue to check for traffic while on the street.
  • Walk – never run – from house to house or across the road.
  • Cross the street only at intersections and crosswalks.
  • When crossing at an intersection with a traffic light, be sure to watch for turning cars. Obey all pedestrian signals.
  • Walk on sidewalks whenever possible. If there are no sidewalks, walk on the left side of the street facing traffic.

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