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Crash scenes, trauma surgery, tearful testimony: “PARTY” a graphic lesson dangers of inattentive driving

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APPLETON (WITI) -- Crash scenes, trauma surgery and tearful testimony is all part of an effort to get people to make smart choices behind the wheel.

This party was set in a theater and featured actors in professional make up -- but the lessons are very real.

This "PARTY" -- or Prevent Alcohol and Risk Related Trauma in Youth -- is a graphic lesson on the dangers and consequences of drunken and inattentive driving from those who know it best.

"The bottom of my shirt, that's him. It says 'save lives, don't text and drive,'" PaKou Xiong said.

Xiong was convicted of homicide by negligent operation of a motor vehicle in the 2012 death of James Weiss.
Weiss was riding his bicycle on Kimberly Avenue when he was struck from behind. He died nine days later.

Xiong was sentenced to one year in prison and five years probation.

Talking to this group is part of her yearly 100 hours of community service requirement. She must wear her orange jail jumpsuit and a pin promoting the "Stop Texting and Driving Campaign" started by the Weiss family.

"I don't know what to say, sorry's never enough," Xiong said.

Xiong has spoken a handful of times and says, every time, it's difficult to bring herself on stage.

"I still do it because these younger people, they need to know. They need to hear," Xiong said.

"Texting and driving wasn't even on the radar 10 to 15 years ago," trauma surgeon Dr. Ray Georgen said.

Dr. Georgen says whether its inattentive or drunken driving, people of all ages need to know the consequences of getting behind the wheel of a 2,000-plus pound weapon.

"One mistake can lead to tragedy for the driver, the occupants and people on the road," Dr. Georgen said.

Instead of curtains closing, it could be jail cells, coffins and permanent darkness.

The annual event is put on by Theda Clark Medical Center, and it's in its 10th year.

CLICK HERE for more on the dangers of texting and driving via Distraction.gov.

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