Teen killed while texting

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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Ottawa —

The parents of an Ontario teen who died in an accident are pleading with people not to text while driving.

Damon Souliere was on his way home to Pembroke on the weekend when his car hit a tractor trailer head-on.

The 18-year-old had just sent a text to a friend he saw the night before, saying he had a good time.

Damon’s mother, Susanne, says text messages from friends were still coming through to his phone when emergency crews arrived at the scene.

Now, Damon’s family is spreading the message: Don’t text and drive.

His younger brother, Wesley, just got his driver’s licence, and says “If anyone loves anyone, you shouldn’t have to go through this. Never text and drive.”

Thirty-five people were killed last year in Ontario because of distracted driving and 1,000 more were injured, according to the Ontario Provincial Police.

Organizations: Ontario Provincial Police

Geographic location: Ontario, Ottawa, Pembroke

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Recent comments

  • BR
    June 02, 2011 - 06:56

    About 2 years ago, I stopped at a 4 way. As I started to move, a pickup came from my left, through the 4 way without stopping. The young driver appeared to be texting, in a company truck, with the phone number on the truck. I stopped at a parking lot and called the company. Maybe I saved him from a future accident. We all complain about drivers going to fast, talking on a cell phone, doing their hair, going through stop signs. We need more education before they get a licence.

  • Pat
    June 01, 2011 - 23:44

    Willie, the business guys on the road, or for that matter, anyone driving on our roads who use a cell phone, should check their messages when they make a stop for gas etc. That's why MESSAGE MANAGER WAS INVENTED! What did these people do before cell phones? Don't be in such a rush to answer your cell phone or texts while driving......you just might not be able to do so if you're involved in an accident. The only phone you'll be using is the one in jail. Just saying! And to the family of the young man who has passed, my heart goes out to you, God Bless you in your time of grieving.

  • Matt
    June 01, 2011 - 13:34

    DO NOT believe the first post below by Willie Hunt. He/she is only commenting to get everyone riled up and cause trouble. That's it. These comments from Willie need to stop. Please telegram mods... please don't allow this stuff to be posted. You post a very sad and serious article and it turns into these types of posts. It is insulting and embarassing. Can you imagine if someone personally invovled in this story happened to read these comments here? Think about it.

  • MapleLeafGuy
    June 01, 2011 - 13:28

    People!!! Willie has nothing better to do so he posts on CBC, here, and anywhere else that he can draw attention to himself, he is intentionally posting negative remarks to get people all wound up. I personally think he fell out of the stupidity tree and hit every branch on the way down. Maybe one day we will all be lucky enough to see that his IP addy is blocked and we will no longer have to read his drivel.

  • Leah
    June 01, 2011 - 12:34

    Back Up Willie, You are the one who should read Willie Hunt's comment again. Where do you determine that he pulls over to the side of the road to text or make phone calls? Please point that out to us. In the meantime, this grieving family is trying to get a message through to others to save them from being injured or killed, or some innocent bystander.

  • Back up Willie
    June 01, 2011 - 11:18

    If anyone bother to ACTUALLY READ what Willie Hunt said instead of all these rude comments is that HE ACUTALLY PULLS OVER TO THE SIDE OF THE ROAD to use his cell phone or TEXT ...

    • AJ
      June 01, 2011 - 12:46

      To `Back up Willie', you need to REREAD what Willie wrote. He said he DOES NOT pull over to use his phone! I love how you took the time to write a comment, and disapprove of others, but not fully read what you were commenting on.

    • GET A CLUE
      June 01, 2011 - 12:59

      BACK UP WILLIE - Willie actually said that you can't be pulling over all the time, and says he texts all the time! Read carefully before you make comments sticking up for someone who ALWAYS makes ridiculous comments - why aren't his comments removed by the moderators of this forum? I hear enough foolishness and negativity in the run of one day, you would at least expect people to be respectful when responding to a news story such as this.

  • Danny Fleming
    June 01, 2011 - 10:34

    Folks it is just a plain and simple equation …cellphones + driving = stupid!!!!! Anyone that thinks otherwise is fooling themselves and endangering the lives of others. Regardless if you are just seeing what is for supper or running a business from your pick up…when you cause an accident while using your cellphone, what are you gonna say…”oh I didn't know it could happen to me” …wake up!!!! It is time that this law is strictly enforced.......or do we wait till more people are hurt or killed.

  • Clifton
    June 01, 2011 - 10:33

    I cannot believe what Willie Hunt said.....using a cell phone while driving. This guy WILL get caught....NOT if, but WHEN....just a matter of time.. Using a cell phone, texting, is the SAME as driving when under the influence of alcohol... The innocent always suffer for the GUILTY.... The Police will catch up with you...eventually....I hope and pray...

  • Amazed
    June 01, 2011 - 10:18

    Willie, please explain what it is like to be an exception to the law? I myself have never been one, but have always wondered what it would be like to be above approach. There is a reason that hands free devices have been made. As for texting, I am sure that if you have to wait 10 min to reach your location to answer that the world is not going to come to a screeching halt. I understand that you may run a business, but I am not sure I understand how that should make you an exception to the law. I don’t know if you have children or not, but would you condone them texting while they are behind the wheel?? And if so, what if something happened to one of them because you say its ok to text and drive?? Will it still be ok to text and drive then?? Maybe you should ask the family of that boy and see if they have the same views as you. I agree with MOTHER OF FOUR. Your ignorance is appalling, and as long as there are people like you on the roads there will continue to be unnecessary accidents. When will you grow up?

    • Anonymous
      June 01, 2011 - 11:54

      I think Willie Hunt should be banned from writing any comments actually! I don't think he is running a business from his truck, the only business he has right now is commenting on every article that comes online, whether it be The Telegram, CBC, VOCM, etc. All he does is rile every one, every day...it seems to be great entertainment for him when someone comments on what he says!

  • Judy
    June 01, 2011 - 10:01

    I can't believe Willie's comments. There is absolutely no difference between calling or texting home to check the menu or calling a business associate. Both can equal death for the driver and heartache for his/her families. Imagine the pain of those left behind and your pain if you happened to have caused the accident and survived while others did not. The almighty dollar is not worth the loss of life. You may get away with texting a few times, but who knows when it may catch up with you or maybe it will be the "other" driver coming towards you. I had the priviledge of meeting Damon. I admire his family for going public with their pain. Please, put away the phones while driving. It's just not worth the risk for anyone.

  • mother of four
    June 01, 2011 - 09:47

    Willie Hunt - you don't see a problem with it and you have never got in an accident - YET????? Really..........with that attitude make no wonder there are so many accidents on the roads..........with your arrogance and ignorance this type of behavior will continue.......it's not safe.........whether it's for personal or business reasons.......if you can't haul over then don't answer until you can or get a hands-free device for calls........ It's the unawareness and ignorance that will lead you down this path of you yourself getting killed or killing someone else that is innocent of NOT texting/calling while driving............saying it can't happen or won't happen to you is more ignorance......... Why not ask this family how they are now dealing with not having a son anymore...........maybe if your son had been in this accident you would have a different perspective.................educate yourself and listen to the message of the story!!! It's also not only you it's to all of the people with the same attitude of you don't see anything wrong with it or no accident yet...........seriously!!!

  • Technology Queen
    June 01, 2011 - 09:47

    I was stopped on a light down on Kenmount Road yesterday and during that time frame I saw one male on his cell phone and another female texting. When the light turned green horns were blowing for them to move on and they drove on still texting . IT SCARES ME TO DEATH... WHEN WILL SOCIETY WAKE UP AND LEARN IT IS JUST AS DEADLY AS DRIVING DRUNK OR UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS..... (These were not teens) adults....

  • Peggy
    June 01, 2011 - 09:26

    Even in their grief, this family is reaching out to others. Let's hope "others" actually take heed to their message, for their own safety, and very lives.

  • Willie Hunt Pouch Cove NL
    June 01, 2011 - 09:05

    I see youngsters using there phones all the time. I don't think you should use you're phone when driving if you want to call home and see whats for supper but if your running a business out of your pickup all day long it should be okay to text and call. You can't pull over evertime you need to send a message or recieve a call cause you'll never get nothing done. I do it all the time and I don't have a problem with it and never got in no accident yet. Willie Hunt Pouch Cove NL