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Drunk driving incident ends in loss for one family

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Drunk driving incident ends in loss for one family

Valerie Chavez, Times Staff Writer

It was 4 a.m. on Jan. 17 when she arrived to drop her things off at home. Her mother was asleep in the living room until she was awakened by the sound of her daughter’s heels. When she got up to see what was going on, her daughter had already left in a Chevy Blazer belonging to the victim’s 19- year-old boyfriend, Rommel Borjas, who her mother did not approve of her seeing.
     Borjas’ 17-year-old cousin was also in the vehicle. It was now 4:30 a.m. and the loud noise from the Blazer’s tires woke up Kenneth Crawford, a homeowner on Rudway Court and Bradshaw Road, where the scene took place. 
     The two young men were two times over the legal alcohol limit, and the driver hit a tree in the backyard of the homeowner. The two young men managed to get themselves out before the vehicle went into flames; the young lady was stuck in the SUV as it burst into flames.
     The young lady was able to get herself out of the car before the second explosion. Kenneth Crawford hosed the victim down because she was on fire.
     When the ambulance arrived the burning patient was very calm and responsive to what the paramedics were saying. “You’re so strong” is what the paramedics were telling her. And the victim replied: “Tell my mom…”
     Then she went unconscious. Her mother got a phone call at 6:30 a.m. when the paramedics arrived with the victim at UC Davis Medical Center. The doctors wanted to pull the plug on her right then and there because of the condition she was in.
     Ninety-seven percent of her body was burned, but she was still hanging on until all of her family arrived. Jan. 15 is when I drove to the hospital at 8 a.m., going right to her room at my arrival.
     She was still breathing and after every little thing said to her, her way of responding was a big deep breath to let you know she was listening and there with you every step of the way, like we were there for her.
     Around 11 a.m. is when she took her last breath and flew with the angels on her own. That girl was my cousin, Ashley Marie McEntee, who had just turned 20 years old on Nov. 1.     
     “No one’s parents want to go through this,” Ashley’s mom, Elena McEntee said.
     You can be a part of helping eliminate drunk drivers, underage drinking and honoring victims and survivors by supporting WALK like MADD, a community event in raising money to help fund programs for people all around the world. On May 14, 2011.
     This loss has changed my life dramatically and has really gave me an eye opener to a lot of realistic things. I know, us young teenagers and adults we get upset at times for getting told about safety because we think we know everything, but in reality we don’t know until we actually lose someone in our lives.
     “We only tell you guys things because we worry for you kids,” Joe Aguilar said. “you are the next generation of us, you all represent us.”
     The next time you may think about getting in the car with someone with alcohol in their system please, think about what is right for you and your future because every bad decision leads to a bad consequence.

  1. Cathy Ybarra says:

    WELL SAID VALARIE! HOPEFULLY ALOT OF TEENAGERS READ THIS,SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS, BUT WE ALL KNOW SHE’S ANGEL AND IN OUR FATHERS HANDS :) AND THAT SHE WAS A VERY SPECIAL PERSON THAT WILL B MISSED ALOT….

  2. Tabatha Chavez says:

    Val – I am so sorry to hear about your cousin. This is a great article and amazing tribute to a life lived, even if it seems all too shortly.

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