Under the Hat: More than White Noise - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Under the Hat: More than White Noise

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Parents of teenagers say it so often it starts to become white noise, just a rite of passage for the kids getting out the door.

"Be careful out there!"

"Don't drink and drive!"

"If you get jammed up give us a call no matter what time it is."

They smile and nod, "Yes, Mom, yes Mom."

And yes, it's frustrating to be patronized by a teenager, but parents learn early on to let it slide, part of the give-and-take in maintaining a relationship during those difficult years.

They believe themselves immortal at that age; so as parents we must always walk that thin line between shattering the innocence and keeping them safe.

But at least it's an on-going conversation.

Not every family is as lucky.

That stark reality is being lived this week for one Girard family, after a popular young student athlete named Brandon Nicosia died in a car accident.

The car was full of kids partying because Girard's high school graduation was just a few hours earlier.

The 21-year old driver of the car has a history of violations but that didn't stop him from once again getting behind the wheel.

He now faces homicide by motor vehicle charges while DUI; the Girard community faces the reality that no one is immortal.

The family has decided that Brandon's death can only have meaning if he stands as a beacon, a real life warning that cautions about being safe are more than white noise, that real world mistakes can have real world implications and that some of them are permanent.

We can't put bubbles around our kids and all the preaching in the world inevitably won't stop most of them from making their own mistakes before learning from them.

One Girard family hopes tonight that the price they are paying for one bad choice might prevent some other family from suffering the same fate.

We can only hope that they are right.


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