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Keller @ Large: Drunk Driving An Unforgivable Crime

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Trooper Ellen Engelhardt. (State Police photo)

Trooper Ellen Engelhardt. (State Police photo)

WBZ-TV's Jon Keller Jon Keller
Jon Keller is WBZ-TV News' Political Analyst, and his "Keller A...
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BOSTON (CBS) – Finally, the weather has turned nice, and in a region that doesn’t get enough of it, we like to put warm nights to good use by getting out and enjoying ourselves.

I suspect there may be a few house parties built around the Bruins game Saturday night, and the town is crawling with fresh graduates celebrating their achievement.

Congratulations!

It’s all good, except when it isn’t.

Summertime is sweet, but it sours fast when people drink and drive, as all too many of us continue to do.

Like the 18-year-old kid who was driving drunk at almost 100 miles-an-hour on Route 25 in July of 2003 when he crashed into the cruiser occupied by State Police Trooper Ellen Engelhardt.

Trooper Englehardt was a Dorchester girl, St. Gregory’s parish, with diplomas from Bishop Feehan in Attleboro, Stonehill and Anna Marie College.

A beloved sister, mother and friend as well as a respected state trooper, she lived eight years with severe brain injuries before passing away this week at age 58.

She was one of our state’s first female troopers. She was also the first female state trooper to die of injuries sustained while on duty.

But frankly, at the rate we’re going, she won’t be the last.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

In the last year-and-a-half state police cars have been hit by alleged drunk drivers 23 times.

Any level of impaired driving is unacceptably dangerous, but imagine how bombed you have to be to plough recklessly into a marked police car.

It’s an unbearable tragedy when anyone gets hurt or killed by the utter irresponsibility of drunk driving, and the damage extends far beyond the victim, as those who loved Ellen Engelhardt can tell you.

Suffice to say that it’s among the most unforgivable crimes there is because it’s so randomly careless and stupid.

So if you’re planning on partying anytime soon, ask yourself – do I really want that to be a description of me?

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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