February 6, 2020

The older sister of a teen killed by a drunk driver in 2014 has been named MADD Canada’s new national president.

Jaymie-Lyne Hancock will advance awareness and education initiatives, promote public policy priorities, and collaborate with volunteers and supporters, said a press release from the organization.

Most importantly, she will be the powerful, leading voice for her brother, and for all victims, whose own voices have been tragically silenced by impaired driving, the press release said.

Dean Jr. (DJ) Hancock was leaving a hockey tryout Aug. 21, 2014 when he was struck head-on by an impaired driver.

Pinned in his vehicle for over an hour, DJ eventually succumbed to his injuries and died on the scene.

Both of DJ’s parents had been at the tryout that night, and drove up to the crash just minutes after their son was hit, witnessing the horrific scene and the death of their only son.

DJ was just 18 years old at the time and had plans to start university in just a few short weeks.

Witnessing the immense impact DJ’s death had on so many, Jaymie-Lyne knew she would not let her brother’s senseless death be forgotten, the press release said.

Jaymie-Lyne, 26, is a labour and delivery nurse, and is currently a graduate student working towards her Master of Science in Nursing (Nurse Practitioner), with plans to graduate in late 2020.

From 2014-2016, she assisted in raising funds for what is now the DJ Hancock Memorial Park. The park, built in her brother’s honour, opened in 2016 in Sudbury, ON. It includes a play structure, hockey-themed splash pad and outdoor workout section for children and families to enjoy.

In recent years, she has focused much of her attention on fighting impaired driving, both to honour DJ and to help protect other families from experiencing this devastation.

Since her brother’s crash, Jaymie and her parents, Dean and Kim, have made it their mission to bring awareness to the cause, and to educate her community on the dangers and risks associated with impaired driving.

Jaymie has been the voice for this cause when her parents could not be. She has spoken at schools and events in her community, sharing details of her brother’s death, and the impact the crash had on her and her family’s life.

In 2017, Jaymie and her parents were awarded the Rolland Mousseau Community Leadership award, recognizing their efforts to end impaired driving. In 2018, Jaymie was awarded the Louise Joanne Twerdy Leadership Bursary, once again recognizing her dedication and determination to end impaired driving.