Dear Friend,

It’s the holiday season and all across Canada people are celebrating.

But in some homes there is only darkness. No lights sparkle from the eaves, no gifts wait to be opened. The families inside don’t feel much like celebrating. The tragedy of impaired driving has left its mark forever on their shattered hearts.

This season, with you by our side, we can pay tribute to these victims and survivors as we recognize the 30th anniversary of Project Red Ribbon.

Project Red Ribbon is not only an awareness program, it gives us the opportunity to honour those who have been injured and killed on Canada’s roads. Together, we remember people like the ones mentioned in this letter, including my own dearly loved stepson, Nicholas.

My husband Terry and I lost Nicholas suddenly, brutally, when his vehicle was hit by an impaired driver. We never thought we’d find peace again. And then like a beacon of light MADD Canada came into our lives.

Please, find it in your heart to make a special holiday gift to MADD Canada. At this emotionally-charged time of year, victims/survivors desperately need the support your generosity will bring. They need to know you’ll never stop fighting to end impaired driving and spare others the agony of losing a loved one to this crime.

When you’ve lost a treasured family member to impaired driving the holidays can be the hardest time of the year. All around us we see the season celebrated with joy and happiness. And we remember that we used to feel the same way, back when our loved one was safe and celebrating with us.

Your gift today reminds us we are not alone. However sad we may be, there are people who care and want to help. Believe me your support makes a difference.

This season, please join me in honouring thousands of Canadians who are no longer here to celebrate the holidays with their families. They will never be forgotten.

Together, we’ll remember best friends Mason and Devon. The two 12-year-old boys were being driven home from a hockey game when their pickup was struck by an impaired driver and burst into flames, killing them instantly.

Please take a few moments to think about DJ. His parents watched helplessly as rescue crews worked for an over an hour to free their son after an impaired driver hit his car head-on. Sadly, DJ was gone before they pulled him from the wreckage.

There are so many victims and survivors – far too many to ever mention here. But these fathers, mothers, husbands, wives and children are forever in our hearts. I hope they will be your inspiration to give generously this season and to be part of the fight to end impaired driving.

Please give as generously as you can. At MADD Canada, we want you, your family and all Canadians to make it home safely to celebrate the holidays with the ones they love – so we will never stop the fight to end impaired driving.

Wishing you a safe and happy holiday!

Patricia Hynes-Coates
National President
MADD Canada