Malina Price-Bos grew up in Auburndale, FL. At the age of 19, she won Miss Auburndale and was later awarded the Miss America Organization’s Community Service award.
She dedicated her life to community service and making a difference for others. After graduating from college, Malina and her husband Keith moved to Israel to become missionary teachers. But tragically, their marriage was short lived. After her husband’s death, Malina returned home to Auburndale.
On St. Patrick’s Day in 1996, just two months after Keith died, Malina and her parents were driving home from church. They were in separate vehicles, when a vehicle crossed the center line and sideswiped the vehicle her parents were in, and then struck the vehicle Malina was driving head-on.
Malina was killed instantly. She was 23.
The driver had a blood-alcohol level of 0.24 and told officials at the scene that he had been drinking at a few bars. He was convicted of DUI manslaughter and sentenced to 17 years in prison. He served 9 before being let out on an appeal.
Malina’s family – her brother Bubba, father Larry, and mother Flora – was devastated by her death. They connected with Mary Dean, a MADD victim advocate in MADD Polk County who helped them throughout the court proceedings. Malina’s mother, Flora, continued her involvement with MADD because she knew Malina would have wanted her do something to help prevent drunk driving. Flora served as the leader of the MADD Polk County Chapter, and continues to share her story often, participating in panel discussions at schools and at court-appointed activities.
“The pain of loss is still real but I am grateful to MADD for the opportunity to volunteer, making Malina’s death not be in vain,” said Flora.
|Malina and her brother Bubba|
On February 25, 2006, 18-year-old Laura Ann Gorman, a college freshman, was riding home with a friend. The driver, who had been drinking, drove off the interstate and crashed into a tree. Laura died at the scene— just a few miles from her dorm room. The driver, whose BAC was .12 three hours after the crash, was convicted of DUI manslaughter and sentenced to four years in prison.
Those who knew Laura describe her as a bright, beautiful and caring individual. A hard working and conscientious student, she graduated from high school with a string of awards and accomplishments. She loved cheerleading and spent many hours as a teen volunteer for hospice. She earned an Honors Scholarship from her college and a Florida Bright Futures Scholarship. Her life held enormous potential; she was someone who had the promise and compassion to make a difference. Her death is not only a monumental loss for her family, who are left wondering what might have been, but for the community as well.
After Laura was killed, her family joined MADD. “Joining MADD was a way to keep Laura’s memory alive and to know that her life made a difference,” says her mother, Helen Gorman. Helen is the Chair of the Pinellas Walk Like MADD® Committee for the third year and also serves on the MADD Pinellas Advisory Board. Laura’s younger sister, Diana, is also involved with MADD, as well as other drunk driving prevention efforts.
Laura’s family shares her story in hope that it will send a strong message regarding the 100% preventable crime of drunk driving and ultimately spare another family from the irreversible devastation they have endured.
|Team Laura at Walk Like MADD|