As we told you about last week, Brandon Silveria and his father, Tony, traveled to Capitol Hill in Washington, DC today to speak to students about the importance of "making the right choice" about alcohol. Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), a longtime congressional leader in the fight to reduce underage drinking, presented Brandon and Tony with a Congressional Record Tribute in honor of their tireless efforts in the fight against drunk driving and underage drinking.
"What you become depends on the choices that you make," Brandon told more than 150 interns, pages and other students who attended the presentation at the U.S. Capitol complex. "When I was seventeen, I had a job and a girlfriend. Because of my crash, I lost both of them. My hope is that by sharing my experiences with other young people, I can prevent others from being hurt or killed."
"Over the last 20 years, Brandon and his father, Tony, have spoken to more than three million students in all 50 states across the nation - from Maine to California - and their story has been told on "Rescue911," NBC's "TODAY Show," and the Discovery Channel's "HEALTHWATCH," Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard said. "Their message focuses on encouraging teens to make the right choices, resist peer pressure, and realize the trauma created by this kind of personal tragedy. I am honored to present Brandon and his father with a Congressional Record Tribute in recognition of their ongoing commitment to saving the lives of our nation's children."
"The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that in 2008, 11,773 people died in alcohol-impaired traffic crashes across the country," said Susan Molinari, Chairman of The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility. Alcohol-impaired traffic crashes involve a driver or motorcycle operator with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of .08 or higher. "While this number represents a 9.7 percent reduction from the previous year, it shows that we still have much more work to do. To date, we have hosted more than 2,200 events with over 150 Members of Congress to launch our programs in communities across the nation – bringing them to millions of parents, youth, educators, law enforcement officials and traffic safety professionals. I thank Congresswoman Roybal-Allard for her hard work on this issue, and I am hopeful that Brandon and Tony's words will resonate with the guests at today's event and inspire attendees to "make the right choice" when it comes to underage drinking and also drunk driving."