Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

Why I go to Washington


I’m packing my bag, getting ready to go to Washington DC for the Sorrow to Strength conference. I’ll be with other families who have lost loved ones to preventable truck crashes and some people who have survived such crashes themselves. It’s five days that we look forward to and dread all at the same time.

It hurts.

Still, if you ask any individual attending, they will tell you straight away that the reason they work to make our roads safer is because they don’t want another family going through the pain and grief they’ve been through. They don’t want another family suffering because of something that is so preventable.

Tonight I’m listening to the 10:00 p.m. news as I zip the suitcase shut. The television is on just for background noise, I’m not paying much attention, more interested in making sure I don’t forget to take something important.

And then I hear the words ‘semi’ and ‘fatal’ and ‘construction zone.’

And I reel around and stand still as the story unfolds. You can read about it here.

There is construction on a stretch of freeway that I travel regularly. Today cars were slowed to merge into the construction zone. A semi lost control and rear ended the cars ahead. Two men are dead. A woman was airlifted in critical condition to a hospital. Doubtless there are other injuries, certainly other people who were terrified.

It’s early yet, and we don’t know the entire story. But regardless of the details the truth is that tonight there are new families facing a long journey through loss and injury. Their worlds have just imploded. A semi running into the back of cars slowing for construction is the definition of a preventable crash. I hope that we can connect with these families when they are ready. Meanwhile, I’ll travel to DC and try to be heard.

Because this is why I go to Washington.

Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

15 thoughts on “Why I go to Washington

  1. If only our Congress had some common sense and was less swayed by lobbyists and dollars. If only.


    • It’s almost always about the money. Sadly. Until someone they know is injured or killed. Sometimes even then. It’s frustrating. Not to say they are all like that. We have a few that are on our side on most issues. We are thankful for their support.


  2. Be a strong voice for reason.


  3. Go get ’em, Tiger.
    The voice of reason will prevail.


  4. I can feel your sorrow in your words. Strength to you as you attend to this important work.


  5. Thinking of you. Hope the conference goes well.


    • Thank you. I hope it is successful too. There are a lot of different measures of success. If the new families feel some comfort that’s a big deal right there. If we get someone in Congress to listen to us, well, that’s another success. And it will be interesting to see what the DOT has going on now with the new Secretary.


  6. Just saw where a 25-year-old died after crashing with a semi around here, Dawn. I think this one was the car’s fault, not the truck’s, but still, someone is dead. Yes, we need some regulations — you tell ’em!!


    • Sometimes, even when it’s the car’s fault, if the truck has safety guards the car driver might survive. So we will fight for guards on trucks so that everyone has a chance of making it home alive. Regardless of fault.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I just want to send you a virtual hug, reading this. I’m so sorry that you have to relive it every year, and especially this year with this dumbass government that just doesn’t care anymore (if it ever did.)


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