Twelve years later, road rage awareness goes strong

Posted at 12:35 PM, Jul 17, 2014
and last updated 2014-07-18 09:23:53-04

WHITEHALL, Mich.-- National statistics estimate aggressive driving causes about 66% of all traffic deaths.  Aggressive driving includes following too close or speeding, and sometimes that leads to road rage.

This is National Road Rage Awareness week. It also marks 12 years since a Kay Shabazz lost her daughter to road rage. Since then, she has dedicated more than 10 years to keeping drivers safe from road rage.

Shabazz founded ROARR in 2004, which stands for Reaching Out Against Road Rage in 2004, two years after the tragic death of her then 20 year old daughter, Diyamond Foster. When it comes to one’s life purpose, Kay Shabazz will tell you she never dreamed hers would be a passion for saving lives.

Like any concerned parent, Shabazz used to pray that her kids would be safe on the road.

But on July 15, 2002, Foster was run off the highway on I-96 near Coopersville in a road rage incident.

"When it happened, I said 'Lord that’s not what I said; that wasn’t my prayer,'” Shabazz said.

For the past decade, Shabazz’s focus has been teaching teens and adults about the signs of aggressive driving and how to keep emotions off the road.

But she says more needs to be done by lawmakers.

“I don’t need a road rage bill. What we are going to push for is an educational bill."

When Diyamond died, she left behind a little girl. Dynasty is now 13 years-old and plays an active role in the campaign.

Shabazz’s focus is to keep an open dialogue with her 13 grandchildren and keep carrying on in memory of Diyamond.

"I can't hear her voice, I can't see her face," Shabazz said. "I pray that if I stay on my track and be reverence to God in truth and unity that He promised, we will see each other again.  And, I'm going to keep Him to His promise.”

Saturday, July 19, ROARR is hosting a ride in memory of Diyamond Foster.

Drivers and motorcycles are invited to line up at Mona Lake Park in Muskegon and 3131 Alpine in Walker at 9:30 a.m. They will drive to Coopersville, where Diyamond was killed. Immediately after, there will be a picnic at Mona Lake Park from 11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.