Tulsa Area Families Rally Against Drunk Driving

Sunday, August 30th 2009, 5:02 pm
By: News On 6

By Jeffrey Smith, The News On 6

OWASSO, OK -- A rally was held this past weekend against drunk driving. Family members from some of Tulsa's most high-profile cases got together to warn drivers.

Most of them were strangers before this weekend, but through their shared grief, they hope to send a powerful message as Labor Day approaches.

"My heart is so empty. It just hurts. I miss my daughter so much," said Angela Voss, who lost her daughter two months ago.

Christa Voss was killed while riding her bicycle along state Highway 51 near Sand Springs. Troopers say they found an open container in Tausha Borland's SUV and they reported a strong odor of alcohol.

6/22/2009  Related Story: Bond Increased For Woman Charged In Bicycle Deaths

Now Angela wants to remind drivers of a mother's anguish.

"I think of her when I'm in my car, when I go into a store, I cry," said Angela Voss.

Court records show Borland was charged with DUI two years ago, but pleaded guilty to a lesser charge. She received a six month suspended sentence.

"How many people have to die? Honestly. This is a very small percentage of people who die, right here. It makes me sad," said Bobbi Nickel, who lost her brother, Casey Jones, two years ago.

Kimberly Graham was convicted in the spring of five counts of first-degree manslaughter after crashing her SUV into a large crowd outside a Tulsa bar. She told police she had one mixed drink, two shots and six beers that night.

3/12/2009  Related Story: Kimberly Graham's Request For New Judge Denied

"It's real. When you get that phone call and you didn't have a chance to say goodbye. You get nothing. You get a phone call that says, ‘he's gone,'" said Bobbi Nickel.

They stood together. Strangers before, but linked together by a tragic thread.

"It's like half of me is gone because, he was like my other half," said Sheena Coberley who lost her brother, Aaron Gillming, one year ago.

Ricky Crase was driving home last Labor Day weekend. He crashed his car and killed his two passengers. He was charged with DUI and pleaded guilty this month to two counts of second degree murder. Records show Crase has a history of drunken driving dating back 14 years.

8/19/2009  Related Story: Collinsville Man Enters Guilty Plea To Murder In Missouri

"If one person sees this sign, and it makes them not get in the car after drinking, really we'd have done what we wanted to do," said Sheena Coberley.

Three families, asking drivers, to remember their faces before getting behind the wheel.

Many of the people at the rally say they will meet with state lawmakers this week to try to toughen Oklahoma's drunken driving laws.