Pictures of smiling faces sat in the front of Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Edmonton on Sunday, as candles were lit and poems read to honour victims of impaired driving crashes.
This marks the 25th year that Mothers Against Drunk Driving has held a vigil like this during the holiday season.
There have been 2,039 impaired driving charges this year in Edmonton, according to police. It’s a decrease of nine per cent since 2017.
MADD Canada stats show that on average, there are four people killed every day across the country because of impaired driving.
Some families have attended vigils before. For others, like Lori Kryger, it’s their first time.
“This is a way for me to remember my husband and brother-in-law before we get into this whole Christmas season. When you come here, everyone gets it,” Kryger said.
In July 2018, her husband, daughter and brother-in-law were driving to Vancouver. A driver going the other direction crashed into them. Her daughter was injured, and the two men were killed, she explained.
Kryger joined the board for the Edmonton-area MADD branch.
“There is no reason why people should be driving impaired, whether it’s drugs or alcohol. I can now explain how an action like that impacts the lives of survivors,” Kryger said.