Thank you to all participants! Good luck!!
To glorify God and honor Michael's legacy by supporting causes and initiatives that have been important to Michael, his faith, and his family.
Merry Christmas from The Michael Collins Foundation! The December 2016 Newsletter is now available by clicking the picture/link below. Read a special message from Jim and Kelly Collins, learn about MADD’s new Michael Collins Humanity Award, find out the date of the 2017 MCstrong 5K Classic, and much more!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 11, 2016
Contact: Heather Wedel, MADD
MADD Launches #FightAffluenza Petition for Ethan Couch Case to Be Transferred to Adult Court
DALLAS – Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) today launched a petition demanding Ethan Couch’s case be moved from juvenile to adult court during his transfer hearing scheduled on January 19. The petition went live today at madd.org/fightaffluenza.
“Couch has been found, and everything possible must be done to hold him accountable and to ensure that Couch has no more victims,” said MADD National President Colleen Sheehey-Church, whose 18-year-old son Dustin was killed by an underage drunk and drugged driver. “Couch is not a child. His actions are not that of a child. Four people were killed and several injured, and Couch continues to show no remorse and blatant disregard for the law.”
MADD is asking for 30,000 signatures by January 19 to provide to the prosecution prior to Couch’s transfer hearing in Tarrant County, Texas. Transferring Couch to adult court gives the criminal justice system the opportunity to hold him accountable by ensuring his probation extends beyond his 19th birthday in April 2016. MADD is asking media to share the petition across the nation, and for family and friends to share the petition on social media.
“Time and time again MADD hears stories where the drunk driving offender only receives a slap on the wrist, and enough is enough. Enough excuses. Enough second chances. The families impacted will never get a second chance to see their loved ones, or to stop injuries from happening,” continued Sheehey-Church. “The national attention in the Couch case must be used to start a larger conversation about the country’s complacency on drunk driving. Our hearts are broken for the hundreds of thousands of victims who have been killed or injured. MADD cares, and if you do too, join us to fight affluenza, sign the petition, and join MADD in our mission to end drunk driving.”
For those personally impacted by the Couch case, or any one impacted by drunk driving, drugged driving and underage drinking consequences, MADD Victim Services are available at no charge, serving one person every fifteen minutes through local victim advocates and MADD’s 24-Hour Victim Helpline, 1-877-Help-MADD.
About Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Founded by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these crimes and prevent underage drinking. MADD supports drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge, serving one person every fifteen minutes through local MADD victim advocates and at 1-877-MADD-HELP. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® will end drunk driving through increased law enforcement, all offender ignition interlock laws and advanced vehicle technology. PowerTalk 21® is the national day for parents to talk with their teens about alcohol, using Power of Parents®’ proven approach to reduce underage drinking. Learn more by visiting madd.org or calling 1-877-ASK-MADD.
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Editor’s Note: Interviews with MADD spokespeople are available. Please contact Heather Wedel, MADD PR Specialist at Heather.Wedel@madd.org or 469-420-4544.
Michael loved baseball. He called his two years as a Heartland Hawk “the best two years of my life.” Those two years included consecutive trips to the NJCAA World Series in Enid, OK. Prior to playing at Heartland he starred at Normal West, leading the Wildcats to consecutive Big 12 conference championships. And while he was attending Illinois State University, Michael was an assistant coach at University High School.
The Michael Collins Memorial Scholarships will be awarded annually to a player who exemplifies the characteristics that made Michael a special individual to have as a teammate, player, friend and son. Players chosen will demonstrate a strong faith, an outstanding work ethic, a commitment to servant leadership, a high level of integrity, a love for coaches and teammates, and a pursuit of excellence both on and off the field.
Here are the 2015 scholarship winners:
Heartland Community College – Travis Auer
Travis is a redshirt freshman at Heartland after missing his initial season of college baseball while recovering from elbow surgery. Travis is a 2014 graduate of University High School, and Michael was one of his coaches at U-High. Even though he was unable to play in his initial collegiate season, Travis brought an attitude of giving and servant leadership to the team, contributing in any way possible. He consistently carries one of the best GPA’s on the team and attended all of the team chapel’s last spring. Travis also volunteered several hours during The Michael Collins Foundation baseball events in 2014.
Normal West High School – Reid Birlingmair
Reid led the Wildcats to a regional championship in his senior season and was selected to play in the Illinois Coaches Association – MCstrong All-Star game and the Pantagraph All-Star game. Reid excelled on the field and in the classroom at Normal West, and embodied Michael’s faith, attending all of the team’s optional chapels in the spring of 2015. Michael had the opportunity to coach Reid when Reid was a 6th grader at Parkside Junior High School. Reid’s older brother Jacob was one of Michael’s best friends and a Normal West Wildcat teammate. Reid is continuing his baseball career at the University of Illinois-Chicago.
University High School – Nick Mosele
In his senior season, Nick led U-High to a 28-6 record and was selected to play in the Illinois Coaches Association – MCstrong All-Star game. He also represented U-High in the Pantagraph All-Star game. As a junior in 2014, Nick’s outstanding defense helped the Pioneers win a regional championship and advance to the sectional title game. Michael coached Nick at U-High, and loved working with Nick and the other infielders. Nick has been a role model on and off the field, pursuing excellence in baseball and the classroom. Following in the footsteps of his parents, Nick is attending Augustana College and is playing baseball for the Vikings.
Congratulations to all recipients and thank you for supporting Michael’s foundation!