Wednesday, March 27, 2013

What does drinking and driving get you these days?

There has only been one Tim in my life for many, many years, but as some of you know, last July, another Tim entered our lives and changed them forever.  On July 18th Tim Bland made the decision to get behind the wheel of his car, and drive.  He was driving on the wrong side of a divided road here in Fort McMurray when he hit my husband head on.  I will never forget the terror I felt that day in getting that call and making my way to the scene of the accident, less than a kilometre from our door step.  I will never forget bargaining with God that if he let my Tim be okay I promised to be a better wife, mother, whatever I could do....just let my husband be okay.  It was an unbearably long day waiting for surgery, and then waiting for him to wake up.  It was terrifying to bring him home when he could not walk, and had to rely on me for everything during those first few weeks.  And it was an experience that made us realize, once again, just how quickly life can change.

Well, today, fairly quickly from what we have heard, the other Tim was sentenced for his drinking and driving.  We did not know what to expect, but we were told over and over not to expect jail time.  And  in reading  verdicts in papers for other cases, we came to think that there would be no jail time.  So we were surprised today when he received a nine month jail term, to begin next month.  But on top of that, he will not have a license for three years, and will have nine months probation upon his release from jail.  I have to admit, thinking that he will be unable to drive for three years makes me feel a little better, and I can only hope that he will never take a drink again so that he will not make such a terrible decision again.  I also think that a nine month sentence was fair, although everyone seemed very surprised by the decision, as the judge said that she wanted to send a strong message to the community that drinking and driving on our roads in Fort McMurray is not okay.  I like that message, we have heard too many stories of people injured right here in the city since Tim's collision.  His time almost matches the time that hubby had to be off work.  I hope that when he is incarcerated he will think of how Tim suffered those months, and how much our lives all changed.

My Tim went back to work completely last Monday, and has already been out of town for meetings, lol, so some may think that he is back to his intense busy self.  But he still has pain, we don't know if his hip will ever be the same, as the pins that they put in may have to come out.  He is still doing physio, trying to gain his strength back in his leg, and he is trying acupuncture as well for some pain relief.  In typical Tim fashion today, he actually feels bad for man who caused him so much pain...I told him he was crazy, I hope that his life is better from here, but I don't feel sorry for him.  I saw my husband suffer too many nights and worry until he was completely stressed out about bills during the last few months, there will be no sympathy from me.

My only hope is that someone will hear our story, and if they have a few too many drinks some night, they will remember and call a cab, or stay where they are instead of risking changing many lives forever.  And I hope that judges continue to surprise people and give some sentences that will send a message that drinking and driving on the roads of Fort McMurray will not get you a slap on the wrist.


  1. Wow. Thank you for sharing. Glad Tim is better now as it could have been so much worse than it was.

  2. Thank you for sharing, Verna! I'm glad the sentence included jail time; This is not something to ever be taken lightly. Keep writing and inspiring!

  3. Thanks so much for your comments guys, it always motivates me to do more long as I know one person can take something, anything from what I share here.

  4. Getting involved in a car accident must've been a very traumatic experience; not only for your husband, but for you as well. Thankfully, the surgery went fine, and your husband was able to recover soon after. It was also good that the driver at fault received his rightful sentence. At least your experience still ended well. Anyhow, how’s your husband now?

    Kim E. Hunter