Note: we are republishing this story in light of recent reports that suggest deadly car crashes spiked ‘a scary amount’ in the past year. More on this here: https://www.motorbiscuit.com/deadly-car-crashes-spiked-scary-amount-2021-national-crisis/
A California man who had just bought gifts for needy children was killed in a car crash by a suspected drunk driver.
Christopher Ashe, 47, had just bought $120 worth of toys to give to disadvantaged children when the car he was in was rear-ended near Victorville, KABC reports.
Christopher's brother, Jared Ashe, was driving when the crash occurred, but survived. He described the crash as akin to being hit by a semi-trailer. The car flipped several times.
Christopher died, leaving loved ones heartbroken and upset over how he had died.
"This person wanted to have fun and he never took into consideration what a dangerous thing he was doing by getting into that vehicle drunk and driving," said Karen Ashe, Christopher's mother. "I've lost my parents. I've lost my brother. But it's nothing like losing my son."
The suspected drunk driver is 34-year-old Florencio Bernal. He was arrested, but made bail. He faces four felony charges.
Many on social media expressed outrage, with some saying Bernal should face harsher punishment, like first-degree murder charges.
"Drunk drivers should be charged way harsher than they are," wrote one woman on ABC7's Facebook page. "Absolutely sickening. RIP your gifts and good heart will be remembered."
"Another drunk driver killed an innocent man," commented another. "Stop drinking and driving. They put so much emphasis on prescription drugs but don't push drinking and driving enough. Put more restrictions on these people."
Karen warned others about driving while impaired this holiday season, hoping her son's story may save lives.
"Don't drink, don't take drugs and get in the car and think, 'hey, I'm OK.' Because you're not," she said. "You're a killing machine is what you are."
According to BACtrack, the holiday seasons is one of the most dangerous times of the year to be on the road.
Deaths as a result of drunk driving increase up to 34 percent around Christmas and New Year's Eve.