No one could have predicted the tragedy that would befall Merritt Levitan when her cross-country bike tour was cut short by a distracted driver. Her loved ones are determined, however, to use her story in a positive way.
Levitan was in a group of mostly teenagers on a bicycle trek covering over 3,000 miles of the country when Teagan Martin, 22, clipped her from behind with his vehicle. He did not notice how close to the cyclists he was because he was in the middle of reading a text message. A day after the accident, Levitan died at a nearby hospital.
Instead of coming after Martin, Merritt's parents decided to launch the "TextLess Live More" campaign, set to officially begin with the release of two public service announcements on July 3rd. Friends and family of the Levitans – and even Martin – are excited about what else the campaign may accomplish.
The scope of the campaign goes beyond just texting and driving, however. The Levitans hope that people will put their phones down altogether and enjoy life more just as Merritt did. Family and classmates have said that the bike tour was just the latest in a long history of Merritt's outdoor adventures. The family is grateful for the support they have gotten from their community, and they look forward to helping their daughter's generation live life to the fullest.
To learn more about Textless Live More, what they're doing, or how you can help, visit their website.