On July 21, 1989, our family received the phone call that no family wants ever. Our eldest, Shayne Michael Lolacher, was killed as a passenger of an impaired driver in BC. The vehicle ran a red light, swerved to miss an oncoming vehicle and collided twice with a BC transit bus. The impact ruptured Shayne’s aorta, killing him instantly. Although Shayne started out the ride in the front passenger seat, his 6’3”, 240-pound frame was found on the floor of the backseat of the Honda Civic. The weeks that followed were a blur; arranging to transport the body back to Saskatchewan, choosing a headstone and casket, making visitation and funeral service arrangements and then attending them both for our 18-year- old son and brother is something that we wish we could forget.
It was a devastating blow and was, unfortunately, not the first time that an impaired driver had taken the life of a family member. Years earlier, when Cindy was 13, her 15-year- old brother Douglas was the passenger of an impaired driver and he was killed instantly in a collision, forever impacting that generation.
It was a long-standing tradition with our kids that if they were ever in a position that they were without a sober form of transport home, they could call us at any time, day or night, and we would come get them and their friends so everyone could get home safe. The opportunity came up in 2010 to begin our own designated driver service, to provide the same safe transportation home for the general public. As an additional feature, and to encourage use, we also bring home the vehicle, saving the impaired operator the hassle of having to try and get back to the previous night’s festivities to retrieve their vehicle.
We look at it as though EVERY passenger is another potential family that we have saved the devastating heartache of losing a loved one. Our service truly is a labour of love and one that we are more than happy to offer to people in the Regina, Saskatoon and surrounding communities.