Drunk driving is the leading cause of deaths in Texas highways.
It also shatter lives, including the life of a former Midwestern University student who hasn't been able to speak or walk for the last eight years. But he is communicating in a special way to try and save lives as the face of one of an important Texas campaign.
Sean Carter is now confined to a wheelchair and unable to talk without a special computer but his life wasn't always like that. In 2005 he was a full time MSU student in Wichita Falls pursuing a business degree and a career in modeling.
Sean's mother, Jenny Carter said he always used to write down his goals on a piece of paper.
"I always say, he worked hard, he studied hard but he played harder and that was his problem," said Carter.
On the night before Easter Sean was out partying and drinking with friends and was in no condition to drive. But neither were his friends. Still, he got into a pickup truck with them.
"We were on our way home about five minutes from my apartment when the driver lost control of his truck and it spun and slammed into a tree on the passenger side. That's where I was sitting," said Sean.
Sean's mother recalled the moment she received that also changed her life. She said, "My heart dropped. And then as the doctor listed all of Sean's injuries, I knew what that meant. I knew how bad his injuries were."
Sean was the only one seriously injured in the crash and is now living with 30 scars, 18 pieces of metal in his body and a traumatic brain injury.
"It ended the life I dreamed about. Everything about my life changed instantly. Probably the only thing that remains the same is that my family is still here to support me. That's alright though because things change and you adapt. I've adapted," said the drunk driving victim.
He has adapted by creating new goals for himself. He wants to be able to walk again and save lives. That's why he's now traveling across Texas and telling his story as part of the "Faces of Drunk Driving Campaign."
"This can happen to anyone. It doesn't matter if you're making the decision to ride with a drunk driver or you yourself choose to drive drunk. I am living proof of one of the consequences that can happen," said Sean.
The driver of the pickup truck Sean was in pleaded guilty to a charge of intoxication assault in 2005 and was placed on probation for 10 years. But he was arrested again for drinking and driving. His probation violation landed him in prison and county jails for 26 months.
For more information on the "Faces Of Drunk Driving campaign" and for more victim stories you can click here: http://facesofdrunkdriving.com/
Sean and Jenny also have a nonprofit organization that raises money for traumatic brain injury research. You can learn more about the organization here: http://whenseanspeaks.com/