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‘It can happen to anybody’: Mother of teen killed in car crash urging students to drive safe

Impacts dangerous driving can have on a family
WATCH: Cheryl Dupuis shares her story of losing her daughter when she was only 16-years-old in an alcohol-related crash and how it impacted her family.

On National Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims, Wednesday, a grieving mother was in Winnipeg to spread the message that driving impaired or in any other dangerous way is simply not worth the risk.

Cheryl Dupuis lost her daughter, Danae, in a crash involving an impaired driver in Saskatchewan back in 2000.

“It was a preventable death, unfortunately. If it can happen to her, it can happen to anybody,” Dupuis said.

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“She was a wonderful girl with a wonderful life ahead. It was cut short tragically,” she added.

READ MORE: ‘We all need to do a better job’: CAA on dangerous driving near Winnipeg schools

Dupuis said the consequences of not being in the proper state of mind to drive can have lasting impact.

“It has a life-long impact on a family. The journey for my family continues, that’s what we’re finding out,” Dupuis said.

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“My daughter is gone now. She is fine. She is not suffering anymore.”

“Those of us who loved her are carrying the burden for the rest of our lives.”

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“It changes the outlook you have and the person that you are when you have lost someone so significant,” added Dupuis.

PHOTOS: Snapshots from the life of Danae Dupuis

Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16.
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16. Cheryl Dupuis / Submitted
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16.
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16. Cheryl Dupuis / Submitted
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16.
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16. Cheryl Dupuis / Submitted
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16.
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16. Cheryl Dupuis / Submitted
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16.
Danae Dupuis passed away in a crash at the age of 16. Cheryl Dupuis / Submitted

She has a message for people thinking about getting behind the wheel while impaired.

“There’s somebody out there that loves them. It could be your parents, siblings, spouse, or friends. If something were to happen to you, their lives will never be the same again.”

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Dupuis will be going around to schools in Manitoba to speak with students about the impacts dangerous driving, like being impaired or distracted, can have on people. It’s part of a campaign being put on by Manitoba Public Insurance.

READ MORE: New distracted driving penalties now in effect in Manitoba

“We’re challenging them to think in a different way and bringing a positive message to staying safe,” Dupuis said.

After speaking to upwards of 275,000 students over the years, she said there is one thing that sicks out for her after sharing her message.

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“You never know who it is going to impact. For me, it’s one of the greatest thank you messages I’ve ever gotten. They heard me speak ten years ago and then they sent me a message saying how much it made a difference in their life. You just never know where you’re going to have a lasting impact. It makes the speaking such a rewarding thing to do,” Dupuis said.

You can learn more about Danae’s story here.

More on MPI’s campign can be found here.

WATCH: Cheryl Dupuis hopes to spread the message of driving safe

A tribute to a daughter: Manitoba mom speaking for MPI
A tribute to a daughter: Manitoba mom speaking for MPI