The holiday merry-making isn't over yet. New Year's Eve is Monday, and many families will be continuing their festivities by opening their doors and opening bottles of champagne and other traditional alcoholic beverages to ring in 2013.
OSF and the Island Resort and Casino are, once again, sponsoring the New Year's Eve Liferides to cut down on the risk of drunk driving this holiday weekend.
??You know, she was my closest sister to my age,?? says April Guindon. ??So I never had someone for special sister moments. There are days where I cry because I still miss her."
This New Year, one family will be celebrating without a beloved daughter and sister. Cathi Jo Hurkmans was killed by a drunk driver July 1986. Her sister, April Guindon, was only 11 when it happened.
??My kids know Auntie Cathi. We go to the cemetery, we bring her balloons on her birthday, we talk about her all the time. They see her picture. There are pictures up at our house," Guindon said.
Guindon says she is an advocate of the Liferides program. It's where taxi and charter buses volunteer to pick up passengers who want a safe alternative to driving their car after they've been drinking.
This is the twenty-ninth anniversary of the New Year's Eve Liferides. It was introduced in Delta County in 1983, and the holiday of New Year??s was chosen because of the many holiday parties and the drinking that takes place at them.
According to OSF officials, in the years the Liferides program has been running, there have been no alcohol-related traffic accidents or fatalities in Delta County.
The Liferides are available from 11 p.m. Monday, December 31, through 5 a.m. on Tuesday, January 1.
For a free Liferide, call (906) 786-4448 or (906) 786-1122.
In Gladstone, you can call (906) 420-2939.