Parents Share Grief at Florida's First Distracted Driving Summit

“I never in a million years thought I’d be burying my daughter the way I had to bury her,” Kristin Murphy said

By Steve Litz
|  Thursday, Nov 15, 2012  |  Updated 10:03 AM EDT
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About 300 people came together in Tampa for Florida’s first-ever distracted driving summit on Wednesday. Kristin Murphy was one of them. She shared her grief about the loss of her daughter, who was killed by a distracted driver. U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood also attended the summit.

About 300 people came together in Tampa for Florida’s first-ever distracted driving summit on Wednesday. Kristin Murphy was one of them. She shared her grief about the loss of her daughter, who was killed by a distracted driver. U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood also attended the summit.

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About 300 people came together in Tampa for Florida’s first-ever distracted driving summit on Wednesday.

Kristin Murphy was one of them. She shared her grief about the loss of her daughter, who was killed by a distracted driver.

“I never in a million years thought I’d be burying my daughter the way I had to bury her,” she said.

A distracted driver hit and killed Murphy’s daughter, who was pregnant at the time, Murphy said.

Her heart-wrenching story wasn't the only one, as other parents told of their experiences.

“Our life has never been the same since,” said one father.

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The summit’s purpose was to raise awareness about distracted driving, and to urge state legislators to enact a ban on texting and driving. Florida doesn’t have one, but 39 states do.

Government statistics show sending or receiving a text takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of about 5 seconds. In 2010, more than 3,000 people in the U.S. were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood was at the summit – and also wondering why Florida lawmakers seem to be ignoring what he calls an epidemic.

"I think you need to call legislators and ask them that question,” LaHood said.

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