Metro Family Warns about Drunk Driving

Wednesday, December 31st 2008, 6:45 pm
By: News 9

By Charles Bassett, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Many people will be out celebrating New Year's, but officials say they will be out in full force and are warning you to think twice before drinking and driving.

Hundreds of Oklahoman's are killed every year because of drunk driving. One metro family knows all too well what it's like to lose a loved one.

The Campbell family has been ripped apart by death, and they're sharing their story in hopes no one else has to live through grief and pain they've been through.

"He was a son, he was a husband, he was a father, he was a brother," Diana Campbell said.

Releasta Jamelle Campbell, 30, was Diane Campbell's youngest. Two years ago, he lost his life to a drunk driver.

"I never thought that I would be sitting here today saying my son is gone and he was killed by a drunk driver," Campbell said.

Releasta was driving near the intersection at NW 13th and Broadway when he was hit by Augusta Love.

"All of this just to drink...It's just not worth it," Campbell said.

Law enforcement officials want to prevent tragedies like this from happening New Years Eve. Traffic fatalities are down by about 70 this year over last year, but police still warn drinking and driving is a dangerous practice.

"There are about 680 people who have died. We don't want any more people to lose their lives," Oklahoma Highway Patrol Capt. Chris West said.

State troopers are putting extra patrols on the road for the holiday with the sole purpose of looking for drunk drivers.

"If you're going to get in your car and drive, and you're going to be hammered, there are going to be guys like me that are going to be looking to nail you," Capt. West said. "And that means arrest you for driving under the influence."

Diane Campbell only wishes authorities could have caught Augusta Love before he killed her son; a son who left behind a wife and six children.

"It's not worth taking a person's life. It's not worth ruining your own life," Campbell said.

Augusta Love is serving a 20 prison sentence for manslaughter.