September 25, 2021

Let’s get MADD: Local woman remembers friend lost in DUI accident

(Franklin, GA) — If you have been in Heard County for any amount of time, you’ve heard this story and I’m not going to go into details here.

You can read the articles below if need be:

https://www.heardcitizen.com/teacher-killed-in-3-car-crash-one-week-before-her-wedding

https://www.heardcitizen.com/man-charged-in-october-crash-that-claimed-life-of-bride-to-be

My name is Emily. I grew up in Corinth, graduated from Heard High in 2009. I now live in Glenn with my husband and our three little Braves.

As another October approaches quicker than I’d like to acknowledge, it is reality.

On October 16, 2016 we were traveling home from Columbus, GA where we had just celebrated our dear friend Meghann Smith one week before she was to get married.

My car was struck by TWO intoxicated drivers less than two minutes apart — leaving one passenger severely injured, one escaping miraculously between hits, while killing my friend Meg and leaving me awake to see it all unfold.

Meghann Smith died in an accident involving 2 drunk drivers on Oct. 16, 2016. She is pictured above with her dog, Bella, who also passed away a few days later after being hit by a car on the day of Meg’s funeral.

I remember a time not terribly long ago when I longed for October every year. It was my most favorite time of the year.

I didn’t expect life in general to change that for me but I really didn’t expect the selfish decisions of two drunk drivers to destroy it for me.

I look at October now for a different reason. Every October is another reminder that I made it.

Not that I made it out of the car accident alive, but that through faith, hope, and love – I made it. I made it out of the deep pits of darkness and found purpose again.

Coincidentally, this October 23 is when the annual Walk Like MADD 5K at Mercedes Benz stadium is scheduled to take place.

It is the one thing I feel like I can do to honor Meg and those taken from us so selfishly.

I invite you all to join me –  https://www.atlantatrackclub.org/2021-mercedes-benz-stadium-5k/walk-like-madd.

Registration is open until midnight the night before the walk.

If you can’t walk, I’d ask that you share my fundraising page so MADD can continue to do the work they do to try to prevent tragedies: https://donate.hakuapp.com/donations/new?fundraiser=be202edc6d57e8e4d714

The donations made there go straight to MADD.

We don’t have a trial date, or even much hope that the city of Columbus will hear the trial anytime soon. This October 16, 2021 will be five years and Meg still has no justice.

I feel as though the least I can do is try to raise money for the organization who does so much to prevent more victims..

Make smart choices. You are not invisible. It can be you.

~Emily Fomby Thompson

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