Webinar: Healing After a Fatal Car Accident

The Compassionate Friends, the Open to Hope Foundation, and Carl McDonald, the National Law Enforcement Initiatives Manager for MADD, offer a special webinar on grieving after losing a child due to a driving under the influence (DUI) incident. Drs. Heidi and Gloria Horsley, the hosts, lost a loved one to a DUI crash—Gloria’s son and Heidi’s brother, Scott, was killed in a car crash. They met McDonald at The Compassionate Friends years ago, and were inspired by his ability to find hope after losing his daughter. McDonald’s ex-wife was an alcoholic, and that was the primary cause of their divorce. He won full custody of their five year old daughter, but his ex-wife still had visitation rights. She killed their daughter by driving after drinking.

Many who have experienced a loss find relief in a life of service. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) is a fantastic organization that the Open to Hope Foundation and The Compassionate Friends work closely with. For McDonald, who was a law enforcement officer before and after his daughter was killed, was already familiar with MADD. As a police officer, he also saw on a regular basis what drunk driving could to, but never thought he would be so personally touched by it.

Finding Support

The goal of MADD is to help victims survive, which can be a daunting task. They provide means of tributes, serve victims, and provide victim impact panels. There are walks and other special events taking place around the world, and victims are sure to find an event and MADD chapter near them.

The media can also play a role in cases like these. However, McDonald points out that one major difference is that the media gets closure—when they pack up their tripods and finish reporting on the trials.


Dr. Gloria and Dr. Heidi Horsley

Dr. Gloria and Dr. Heidi Horsley

More Articles Written by Dr. Gloria and Dr. Heidi

Dr. Gloria Horsley and Dr. Heidi Horsley are a mother/daughter team and internationally recognized grief experts. They are the founders of The Open to Hope Foundation and the hosts of The Open to Hope Show. In addition, Dr. Gloria is a board member for The Compassionate Friends and Dr. Heidi is an adjunct professor at Columbia University and has a private practice in manhattan. Their message is that others have made it through the grief journey and so can you, if you do not yet have hope lean on theirs.


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  • Robin Welsh says:

    I lost my son 3 days after his 23rd bday to a tragic motorcycle accident. A old couple as we call them snow birds where here in Arizona from Minnesota and made an illegal left hand turn straight into my sons motorcycle which killed him 5 hours later. Nothing has been done except a moving violation causing death by vehical. Im so angry and lost i dont know where to turn. I do no that i am a single mother of now 3 kids and i have to tryin pick up where these people left me. And thats devastated,hurt,lost,and financially crippled. My son was a very loving responsible gentleman. He wanted to join the army and have his own family. Now he gets to never experience the love and pride he had in his sister and brothers with his own children. I dont want to hurt or be angry anymore…