Carmen’s Legacy tells the story of a family’s journey of tragedy and hope. At Age forty-two, John Maher was involved in a fatal car crash in which he was severely injured and, the eighteen-year-old driver of the other vehicle was killed. Thankfully, John was not at fault. His injuries were so severe that doctors informed him he would never work again. Married with four daughters in either secondary school or university, this was a tremendous blow to this young family.
Ange (John’s wife) had to return to work while John spent much of his time at physiotherapy, specialists, counseling, etc. John had twenty-six plates and screws in his face, neck, and back injuries, and what was rapidly becoming apparent, he had short-term memory problems.
However, there was more tragedy to come for the Maher family. Just 30-months after John’s horrific car crash, the youngest of their four beautiful daughters Carmen (18), was killed in a car crash when she fell asleep at the wheel of her car and hit a tree. In an even crueler twist, her eldest sister Michelle was the third car on the crash scene when on her way to work.
Carmen’s Legacy has many lessons, and possibly the most powerful is how the love and support of family can overcome even the most devastating and tragic event. Sadly many families have faced what this family had to face. A sequence of events is set in motion after the death of a family member in a car crash. Autopsy, selecting a burial plot, providing the clothes for your loved one to be buried in, arranging the funeral, the hymns, selecting the casket, and many more. All of these steps ended up with us burying our beautiful Carmen in a cemetery and leaving her there.
Two years after Carmen’s death, four 18-year-old students were killed in a car crash in Bendigo. John decided to educate young drivers about the dangers on our roads. He developed Carmen’s Road Safety presentation and presented it at secondary schools. Telling Carmen’s story to years 10, 11, and 12 students hoping they would never do to their family what Carmen has done to his.
Carmen’s Road Safety Presentation would soon become an Australian and International success. Conferences at Banks, Insurance companies, Community events, Sporting Clubs, Business would follow.
Nominated for Australian of the Year on five occasions, he was named Australian of the day on December 5, 2015. Won Regional Achievement & Community Award, Won Victorian Road Safety Award, Ballarat Community Road Safety Award, and many more. Carmen’s Road Safety story has empowered 450,000 students and hundreds of thousands of attendees at conferences, seminars, and other events.
Carmen’s Legacy, the book, will take you on our journey of triumph over tragedy. It will empower you to be a safer road user and help you understand who you are.
The Maher family didn’t know that on November 18, 1995, they would lose their beautiful Carmen forever. They would never be able to cuddle her again.
We would love to give Carmen just one more cuddle.
Would you recommend Carmen’s Legacy to other readers, and why?