QHS C.A.R.S. group puts up gravestones to prevent teen drinking - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

QHS C.A.R.S. group puts up gravestones to prevent teen drinking and driving

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QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

It's a startling statistic, 1 in 10 High School students admit to drinking and driving.

So students from Quincy High School's Caring About Riding Safely (CARS) group put up a first of its kind display in front of the school, gravestones to remind their peers not to drink and drive.

There are 150 of them. That's the number you get if you apply that 1 in 10 statistic to the 1,500 kids that attend QHS.

Each one of the gravestones represents the life of a student that could die from drinking and driving.

"Could you live without me?" That's the message on the gravestones, serving as a reminder of the grave consequences of drinking and driving.

Catherine Don, C.A.R.S. President, and junior co-chair Lance Heady both say they opted for a more jarring display to get kids attention.

"People think it won't happen to them but it's a risk for everybody," said Don.

"It really shows people the exact number of kids that really die opposed to just saying 150 people die it actually shows them that this many people would die," said Heady.

Don says the gravestones in front of QHS also serve as a reminder to the community that they too play a part in keeping kids safe.

"We know a lot of people drive by Maine Street so it's just another visual reminder of what we're trying to prevent," said Don.

But that's not where the message stops.

The hallways of QHS have been transformed to look like a city street and the windows have been painted with messages to remind teens not to drink and drive. It's something C.A.R.S. co-advisor Stacie Rossiter says means much more coming from students than an adult.

"It's much more relatable than it is as a teacher if I'm talking to them about it, they're much more likely to listen and respect what their peers have to say," said Rossiter.

And Don says it's messages on a window, and on the gravestones lining Maine Street that she hopes will save a life.

"Just prevent those accidents those tickets, those deaths, so if we can do that, then we've accomplished our goal," said Don.

QHS is hosting several more activities for "Operation Teen Safe Driving Week." On Thursday, students who arrive to the parking lot with their seat belts on will receive Smarties candy, and those that don't will receive Dum Dum suckers.

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