Temple: Man hopes his loss will deter holiday drinkers from driving

A memorial placed at the scene of the deadly 2014 crash. (Staff photo)
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TEMPLE, Texas (KWTX) As New Year’s celebrations approach, Andres Serna is sharing the story of his brother’s death in a crash in which alcohol may have been a factor to encourage others to make the right choice and not drink and drive.

On April 6, 2014, Robert Serna, 47 of Temple, was driving south on State Highway 95.

According to a Texas Department of Transportation crash report, Serna was slowing down to turn into a private driveway when the truck behind him slammed into the back of his car causing it to catch fire and pushing it into oncoming traffic where a second vehicle struck it.

Serna was ejected and killed.

"At least I will always have him here in my heart and it's sad to know that my daughter won't be able to know her uncle."

Wesley Kordes, 37, of Holland, has been indicted for criminally negligent homicide in Serna’s death.

At the time of the accident, Kordes had two previous DWI convictions, according to online judicial records.

Andres Serna hopes the story of his brother’s death will deter holiday drinkers from getting behind the wheel.

"If you are going out to drink please have a plan. I've learned because of this circumstance that one, two (or) three drinks--it really doesn't matter. If you are impaired or you feel anything funny don't take that chance."

Mothers Against Drunk Driving Victim Services Specialist, Reita Hill says fatal accidents in which alcohol is involved are on the rise, but she says they are 100 percent preventable.

"The drunk driving crashes are up and it’s due to a lack of enforcement and lack of enforcement is due to lack of funding to have traffic control."

The Texas Department of Transportation says nearly a thousand people died in traffic accidents last year in Texas in which alcohol was involved.

Authorities say the best thing to do if your celebration includes alcohol is to use a ride-sharing service, a taxi or a shuttle.

AAA is offering its annual Tipsy Tow from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve to 6 a.m. on New Year’s Day.

Call 1-800-AAA-HELP.

The service is free and the wrecker driver will even tow you home as long as it's not more than 10 miles.