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By Jeff Terrill
Fort Wayne Reader
In high school, Mike tried to convince his parents to let him drive to Florida with a few friends for spring break. Mike’s parents wouldn’t budge. They told Mike that a trip like that was too dangerous. Mike was upset, but he got over it.
Now that Mike is nineteen and nearing the end of his freshman year in college, he couldn’t stand the thought of his parents not letting him go to Florida with his friends. Mike manufactured a few “facts” to make his trip sound safer. He lied and told his parents that his college provided transportation in a chartered bus. He also told them that several professors, administrators and their spouses were chaperoning the trip. Somewhat comforted by that information, Mike’s folks offered to send him some money to help with the costs.
Earlier this week, Mike and four of his buddies arrived at their beach side Florida hotel. The oldest looking member of the group used his fake ID and loaded up at the nearest liquor store with several cases of beer and bottles of tequila.
It didn’t take Mike and his buddies long to meet a bunch of other college kids on spring break. Sunshine, beach, music, sun, girls and booze – Mike knew he was going to have a great week.
Mike joined in with some others on the beach drinking upside down margaritas. Mike followed that up with some beers. Before the sun had set on Mike’s first day of his Florida spring break experience, tragedy neared.
On his way back to the hotel, Mike saw a group of kids partying on a third floor balcony. Mike joined the festivities.
The hotel room was packed with people. Mike watched a guy jump from the balcony railing into the pool down below. Mike cleared a path to the balcony. The other partygoers cheered. He moved a table in front of the railing and then stepped back a few feet. Mike sprinted toward the table and jumped. Mike’s foot slid on the table and his head clipped the ceiling as he launched forward.
Mike’s body tumbled awkwardly before his head slammed into the concrete a couple of feet short of the swimming pool. Mike died before the medics arrived.
Mike’s not a real person, but his story is similar to thousands of others who lost their lives during spring break vacations over the years. Car crashes, drowning, alcohol poisoning, falls, drug overdoses are just some of the ways young people die.
The combination of teenage brains, alcohol, drugs, lack of adult supervision and a spring break mindset can be deadly. Spring break isn’t the place or time for youngsters to earn their parents’ trust.
Parents, do your teenagers a favor. Don’t let them go on spring break without you.
Jeff Terrill is a partner/shareholder with the law firm of Arnold Terrill Anzini, P.C. Mr. Terrill represents clients accused of crimes throughout northeast Indiana. You can contact Mr. Terrill with any questions or comments at his office at 260.420.7777 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more about his firm at www.fortwaynedefense.com. This article expressed opinions and observations of the author, is not intended as legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship between the author and the reader. Please consult a qualified attorney with any legal questions or issues you might have. Thank you