BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — October 1 marks the 10th annual Run4Change for the Deutscher family, who lost their lives in a drunk driving crash.
According to a news release, the Deutscher Family Memorial run started after a tragic drunk driving crash took the lives of five people on July 6, 2012.
Aaron, Allison, Brielle, and an unborn baby were all killed, on I-94, while heading to a family reunion.
Tom Deutscher, the father of Aaron, says the run was initially expected to be a one-time event, held on April 7, Allison’s birthday.
But, the turnout was so amazing it lead to an annual event.
This year’s event was originally scheduled for April but was postponed to October because of the weather.
The race venue, course, and distance have all changed in 2022.
With a unique distance run length of four miles, the family and team at the North Dakota Safety Council (NDSC) felt a special tie to the unique four miles for change path.
In recent years, the NDSC took over the administration of the event.
“We don’t want the kids just remembered as the victims of a drunk driving accident. We want to remember them for what they were, contributing members of society. They were vibrant athletes and what better way to remember them, than with a run,” said Deutscher.
Drunken driving is preventable, 31 people lost their lives in 2021 on North Dakota roads due to alcohol-related crashes.
Funds raised are used to educate and change behaviors surrounding alcohol use, drinking and driving, and underage drinking.
North Dakota Safety Council at 1710 Canary Ave, Bismarck
Friday, Sept. 30:
- 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. — Early Registration or Early Check-In
Saturday, Oct. 1:
- 7 a.m. – 9 a.m. — Same-Day Registration
- 8:45 a.m. — Welcome Program
- 9:15 a.m. — Aaron and Allie’s four-mile run
- 10 a.m. — Brielle’s Fun Run-Walk (kids and all ages)
Drinking and driving is against the law, yet on average, nationally, one person is injured approximately every two minutes in alcohol-related crashes.
29 people die each day in car crashes that involved a drunk driver.
In North Dakota, there were 31 alcohol-related fatalities in 2021.
The majority of those crashes involved drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or higher, nearly double the legal limit.
Why We Run
On July 6, 2012, Aaron, Allison, Brielle, and unborn baby Deutscher were struck by a wrong-way drunk driver on Interstate 94, and all involved in the crash were tragically killed.
The Run4Change is a walk/run event designed to bring awareness to the devastating impact drinking and driving can have on those involved in alcohol-related crashes.
The first two runs were held in Fargo and have since been held in Bismarck.
The money raised has gone to the Red River Safe Community Coalition, North Dakota SADD Chapters, the Safe Community Coalition servicing southwest and central North Dakota, Server Training Seminars, scholarships, and post-prom and graduation parties.
The Deutscher car has been converted to a display and these funds help defray its upkeep and travel-related expenses to schools, businesses, and events across the Dakotas, Montana, and Minnesota.
This is the second year the NDSC has led the Run4Change.
Aaron’s father, Tom, worked for OSHA for many years, and he worked frequently with the NDSC during his career.
The NDSC’s mission aligns with that of the family, educating people to help change behavior and prevent injuries and fatalities on the roads. Drinking and driving is preventable.
To register, please visit: https://www.ndsc.org/run4change/