Mom hopes daughter's story will help Citrus County drive safely

By Kim Leoffler, Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, December 19, 2017, 10:21 PM EST

A Citrus County mom says her daughter was texting and driving when she crashed in April of last year and was killed on impact.

  • Citrus County mom shares dangers of texting and driving
  • Corlett partnering w/ sheriff's office for “Just Drive Citrus”
  • Campaign goal to reduce drunk, distracted driving

Marvalene Corlett hopes by sharing her daughter, Angelina’s, story, others will drive safely so they don't have to feel the pain her family felt.

Angelina was coming home from work when she was killed in a car accident. She was just nineteen years old. Marvalene says she was texting shortly before the crash.

"It was like my world crashed," Marvalene said.

Now about a year and a half later, memories are all she has left of her daughter. This year marks their second Christmas without her.

"I see things, and I wish she was here so I can buy it for her. And sometimes I find myself buying things, and I can't give it to her," she explained.

It's a feeling she said she doesn't want any other families to have to go through. That's why she has partnered with the Citrus County Sheriff's Office for their “Just Drive Citrus” campaign.

Angelina is featured on some of their posters, with her last text she sent to her boyfriend, "I can't wait to see you this weekend.”

"If she was here she would tell you don't do it. It's not worth it," Marvalene said.

The Sheriff's Office said the campaign's goal is to reduce both drunk and distracted driving, which deputies say is much needed this year. They say traffic crashes in the county are up by 17 percent this year, with fatalities up 30 percent.

"There's a lot of things happening in your cars these days, whether it's phones and whether your car is talking to you, things like that. So I think there's a whole lot of distractions with just driving a car -- it's not like it was 20 years ago," Captain David Vincent said.

"I think it's going to make a difference. It's already made a difference in a lot of people already in my life and some of the family's and close friends," Marvalene said.

Angelina's life was cut far too short, but that life is one that won't soon be forgotten in this community.