Brooke’s legacy lives on through Rescue Squad

Vicki McDougall and her father Russell Cooper presented a $10,784 donation on behalf of the don’t-text-and-drive foundation to the Corowa Volunteer Rescue Association on Monday night. Pictured is President Robert Slot accepting the cheque and volunteer members Peter Wright, Alan Robb, Taz Slot, Ben Wilson, Ruth Clifton and Peter Clifton.

Brooke Richardson was always going to have a big impact on the world.

Nine years after her tragic death resulting from texting and driving, her impact is being delivered through her mother Vicki McDougall, who has tirelessly campaigned to ensure no parent ever goes through what she went through.

Her family created the ‘Don’t-txt-n-drive’ foundation educating drivers about the dangers of using a mobile phone while operating a vehicle.

The campaign reached a national audience with Ms McDougall sharing Brooke’s story with thousands of students across the country.

In less than a decade the foundation has achieved an enormous amount with laws changing to penalise drivers who use their phones.

“Now that the message is out there, and governments have made it illegal to use mobile phones while driving as a foundation we decided we don’t need to be a financial charity anymore,” Ms McDougall said.

On Monday night Ms McDougall paid a visit to the Corowa Volunteer Rescue Association (CVRA) to donate the last of the money to the organisation that helps with incidents such as road accidents.

“On behalf of the don’t-text-and-drive-foundation, I would like to donate $10,000 to your organisation,” she said.

“We have been connected to this squad for many years and value the work you guys do, especially with road vehicle incidents.”

CVRA president Robert Slot thanked the Ms McDougall and the foundation for the generous donation.

“The rescue squad very much appreciates this tremendous donation of $10,784,” he said.

“You have worked hard to get the campaign where it is, and we will ensure to continue that legacy through the work that we do.

“The money will be used 100 per cent locally to supply equipment for our rescue squad.”

Peter Wright also passed on his gratitude to the foundation.

“I would like to pay tribute to Vicki and the impact she has had all over Australia,” he said.

“To lose a daughter to tragic circumstances and somehow find the strength to ensure no other parent goes through the turmoil she has, is pretty bloody amazing.

“The work done by the don’t-text-and-drive-foundation has significantly reduced texting and driving all over Australia and greatly reduced accidents. We are hugely appreciative.”