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A Mother’s Reflection on an Ill-fated Phone Call

Panic and dismay was the immediate reaction to her daughters accident

March 9, 2016

Fear, concern and worry are just a few of the feelings that overwhelm parents when they hear the words, “I was in an accident.” It was a regular Wednesday afternoon when Maria Camilon Price, a faculty member at Pierce, received the phone call from her daughter on February 16. She had been in an accident on her way to Starbucks.

Alexis Price, a Pierce student, 16 years old, has been driving for over a year. Her car was a manual and was downshifting while going down the hill on Farwest when the car in front of her came to a sudden stop. She didn’t step on her brakes to stop in time and she hit the vehicle in front of her.

Alexis called her mother immediately after the accident, but the call was cut short.  Camilon Price was shocked when she got the call. “For the first few seconds, I was in ultimate panic and disbelief. This is my baby, our youngest – there is no way she could have gotten into a car accident. But she was in one,” said Camilon Price. The impact of the accident caused OnStar to engage so the customer service representative from OnStar was trying to talk to her. Camilon Price said she dropped everything and headed straight to see her daughter with her husband.

She tried to stay calm on the drive, but she still had many questions, “It was the longest 5 minute drive of my life,” said Camilon Price. She said she wanted to know things like whether her back and neck were okay? Was she going to be afraid to drive again? These were all concerns, but the biggest question that kept running through her mind was, is she really okay?

Alexis and the other driver were both okay and had no injuries, but Alexis was trapped in the car briefly. A pedestrian who saw the accident ran over to help. “I was pretty snug and trapped in the car. He kept telling me to breathe and to just relax and calm down,” said Alexis.

Her car was totaled, but the other vehicle only had a minor dent in the back.

When they arrived both parents immediately went over to Alexis to comfort her. “I saw the fear, worry and sadness in her eyes. My husband was with me he jumped right out of my car and ran to her to hug her. She then motioned for me. I hugged her for a few minutes while she sobbed,” said Camilon Price. Alexis was concerned with her parents being angry or upset and kept apologizing about the car said Camillion Price. “Our main concern was that she was safe.  A car can be replaced, she cannot,” she said.

The day after the accident, Camilon Price made sure her daughter got out to practice driving again. “I did make her drive the day after. Some parents may think that was harsh but I had to ensure that she did not develop a fear of driving. She did just fine,” she said. She tried not to lecture to much as she thought the scare of the accident was enough.

Alexis says the accident has definitely impacted how she drives now. “The accident really made me realize how much I need to be aware of my surroundings and that I need to be more cautious on the road,” she said. Camilon Price says she worries a little more than before the accident, “I hold my breath a little longer when Alexis is out, especially at night. But I need to take my own advice and not harp on it,” she said.

Both mother and daughter want students to be cautious when leaning school. “I think students at Pierce should be very careful when going to school and leaving school. Everyone is always in a rush and everything is so fast paced and we all fail to realize that accidents can happen,” said Alexis. Camilon Price says most accidents can be avoided with careful driving, but accidents happen. “We cannot predict when and where, but they do happen. Sure, they can be avoided – and how I wish my daughter’s accident could have been. But the bottom line is that accidents do happen. Everything is replaceable – that’s what insurance is for. Your child is not,” she said.

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