Survivor Launches Anti-Texting While Driving Campaign - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Survivor Launches Anti-Texting While Driving Campaign

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PRESTON, Md. -Twenty-year-old Elizabeth Marks, of Preston, Md., nearly lost her life two years ago when she rear-ended a flatbed truck while reading a text message. She shares her story in hopes of raising awareness about the dangers when texting while driving.

Marks and her mother, Betty Shaw recently launched a “Don't Text and Drive 4 Liz Marks,” campaign in hopes of saving lives behind the wheel.

Marks said she does not remember much about the morning of April 17, 2012, the day her accident happened.

"I don't remember one thing, and I'm really glad I don't because I went through a lot," Marks said.

Her mother saved dozens of pictures from the scene of the accident. Betty said “Liz” was traveling down St. Michaels Road, in Talbot County, where she ran into the back of a flatbed truck. Marks said she looked down to read a text message from her mother that simply read “ok.”

Shaw said she knew Elizabeth drove distracted that day, but did not know it was her text message that caused the accident.

"I spoke to the officer who investigated the accident scene, and he told me she was texting and driving, and I was like no way, to myself,” Shaw said. “She swore to me she never did. “

“As a parent, I would check up on her through a text, and that's what I did.”

 Marks spent three-and-a-half weeks in the Intensive Care Unit at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center for a traumatic brain injury and multiple face fractures.

"At that moment, I remember feeling the world falling down around me,” said Shaw, who recalled the first time she saw Liz in ICU.

Marks has undergone 12 operations and still has a few more to go.

"I lost the full ability to smell. I can't produce tears when I cry, and I can't go to sleep naturally without medicine," she said.

During her time at the hospital, Marks turned 18 and graduated from high school on paper. She missed prom as well.

“It was terrible. I really wanted to feel that; me graduating with a diploma,” she said. “That would mean everything, but I missed it all.”

Marks and her mother are taking their message on the road. The two distribute lime green wristbands, the color used to document the scene of the crash, that read “ Don't Text N Drive 4 Liz Marks.”

"We need to get our message out there. We need to tell people our story; how distracted driving can not only kill you but devastate you, " Shaw said.


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