Grandfather of wreck victim urges young drivers to buckle up

Grandfather of wreck victim urges young drivers to buckle up
(Source: Robert Fuller)
(Source: Robert Fuller)
Kathleen Harville, 22, was traveling east when she left the roadway in a curve and hit a storage building in July 2015. (Source: Caddo Parish Sheriff's Office)
Kathleen Harville, 22, was traveling east when she left the roadway in a curve and hit a storage building in July 2015. (Source: Caddo Parish Sheriff's Office)

CADDO PARISH, LA (KSLA) - An ArkLaTex man is on a mission to teach young drivers the importance of buckling up and not driving distracted after losing his granddaughter in a crash.

Kathleen Harville was not wearing her seatbelt when she was killed in July 2015 when her vehicle left a curve on George Road and crashed into a storage building.

Investigators said it appeared Harville never hit the brakes and may have been distracted while driving. She was discovered the next day by a passerby.

"She just didn't buckle up her seatbelt and we lost her," her grandfather Robert Fuller said.

Now he has made it his mission to speak to young drivers to encourage them to wear their seatbelts.

"We're not going to let Katie die. Katie is always going to be with us. And when I talk to these young people, it makes me feel like Katie is still with us."

Fuller said the message is very important this time of the year with young drivers on the road for spring break.

Fifteen people were killed in motor vehicle crashes this past weekend alone, according to Louisiana State Police.

"I don't want anybody to have to go through what we're having to go through because they didn't think that they'd have to buckle up their seat belt," Fuller said.

Cpl. Brenda Wadsworth, of Caddo Sheriff's Safety Town, said it is not just about wearing your seatbelt, it also is about wearing it correctly.

One of the things they do at Safety Town is teach drivers about safety.

"If they don't wear that seatbelt properly, then it can't do its job," Wadsworth said.

"And its job is to hold you in the seat and to hold you back; and it's supposed to keep you from damaging vital organs."

Some drivers think they won't be involved in crashes, Wadsworth said.

But Fuller wants to show them that it could happen to them just like it happened to his granddaughter.

He said he only speaks at a few schools right now but would love to expand to include more.

Anyone wanting to get in touch with Fuller can send email to KSLA News 12's Eric Pointer at epointer@ksla.com

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