Guest Post by Katie McCabe
This is a picture of Samuel Hayes. He died last week, probably because he had too much to drink. He was sixteen-years-old, only a couple years older than me. I didn’t know Samuel. We don’t live in the same town, but his story hit me hard. He looks like a nice guy, and sixteen is too young to die.
Samuel drowned in a river, and when they did the autopsy on him, his blood alcohol level (BAC) was 0.27!!! Apparently someone bought him some whiskey and it would take about 10 drinks to make his blood alcohol level that high. That’s a lot of whiskey. All I know is after the graduation ceremony at his school, he was given a half-gallon of whiskey and wound up dead.
I think why this story hit me so hard is that it could have been me. Tim and I got lucky when we tried drinking. He took some of his dad’s rum and we nearly burned Mr. Pickford’s shed down. It could have been so much worse. We both lived, and the shed didn’t burn out of control. It was still scary though.
I think another reason why I really feel for Samuel is that he drowned in a river. And having nearly drowned after Harvey left me blindfolded, gagged, and bound in a river, I wonder if Samuel panicked like I did. Or whether he was too drunk to know that he was drowning. I hope in a way he didn’t know. Those moments in the river will stay with me forever. It was awful, and I don’t like to think of him going through the same thing.
Sixteen is too young to die. There was too much ahead for him that he now won’t do. Something for us all to think about.