View Full Version : God needed a good family by his side... Not sure whrere to put this, it was a friend of a friend...

01-03-2008, 09:32 PM
I felt compelled to share this families tragic end. My friend knew her personally.

Maybe it will keep one person out there from driving under the influence.

Bethany And her Angels (http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=307161215)


The article...


Wreck tore budding family
Funerals for 5 on hold as 2 remain hospitalized

January 2, 2008



Bethany and Danny Griffin Jr. had just celebrated their first anniversary two weeks ago.

"They were kindred spirits," friend Jason Starin said Tuesday of the couple, whose lives together were cut short late Sunday when a pickup traveling the wrong way collided with their minivan on an interstate in Toledo.

Bethany Griffin and the couple's 8-week-old daughter, Vadie, died in the crash along with three other members of the couple's blended family. Danny Griffin's daughter Jordan Griffin, 10, of Redford Township and Bethany Griffin's daughters Lacie Burkman, 7, and Haley Burkman, 10, also were killed.

"We're really hurting here," said the Rev. Lisa Arrington of St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church in Baltimore, where the family attended services. "They were juggling things like family and the holidays, trying to make their way."

Arrington said no funeral arrangements had been made. Starin, who lives in Raleigh, N.C., said that's because Danny Griffin, formerly of Livonia, and a daughter remained hospitalized. He was in serious condition Tuesday at St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center in Toledo, hospital spokesman Randall Ortman said.

Michael Gagnon, 24, of Adrian, who police say was drunk, is to be arraigned this morning on charges of vehicular homicide.

Gagnon was alone and traveling north in the southbound lanes of I-280 when he hit the minivan driven by Danny Griffin and carrying six kids and his wife. They were headed from a holiday visit in metro Detroit to the family home in Parkville, Md.

Griffin's 8-year-old daughter, Sydney, was in critical condition, Ortman said. Jordan lived with Sydney and their mom in Redford Township.

Bethany Griffin's son Beau Burkman, 8, was discharged from the hospital Monday and was staying with his biological father. Ortman said the family is declining interview requests.

Danny Griffin's father, Danny Sr. of Livonia, said Monday that his son is a troubleshooter for Comcast. Arrington said Bethany Griffin taught Sunday school at the church and was studying to become a nurse.

Bethany Griffin described Danny Griffin as her best friend, Arrington said. The church is taking donations and praying for the family, she said.

Gagnon is to be arraigned today in Toledo on five counts of aggravated vehicular homicide, a second-degree felony that carries a sentence of 2-8 years in prison.

Police say he had a blood-alcohol level of 0.254% -- more than three times the limit at which a person can be convicted of drunken driving in Ohio. Attempts to reach Gagnon's family were not successful.

I did not personally know this family, but my heart goes out to them, I posted this in this section becuase I know they need all the prayers they can get. No need to reply. I know there is a lot of tragedy in the world, but as I said I felt compelled to share this. Maybe someone already did in the news section... I didn't search.

01-03-2008, 09:56 PM
Not religious here,but this family is in my heart.What A tragic story!So,so sad.I hope all that are still alive are out of the woods?

01-04-2008, 07:52 AM
Praying for this family and I have been since I heard it on the news. This is a really tragic thing.

01-04-2008, 10:35 PM
I prayed about this when I first heard the news. What a horrible tradegy. I can't imagine being on either side of this incident. May God be with each and everyone.... through all of this!

01-05-2008, 04:01 PM
How tragic. Words can't even describe the hell these families are going through right now. My heart and prayers are with them.

01-05-2008, 04:30 PM
My Prayers go out to the family.

01-07-2008, 07:51 PM
My prayers goes out to this family. So many lives gone because of this man's stupid choice to drink and drive. It is just terrible. I hope this man gets his time in jail and then he can have everyday of his life to live with the fact that he took 5 young lives away from this world.

01-07-2008, 08:00 PM
Until they put some teeth into drunk driving this will continue to happen. Nothing seems to happen to the drunk driver until they hurt or kill someone

01-09-2008, 09:55 PM
By Arin Gencer | Sun reporter
January 9, 2008

Wearing a head brace, Daniel Griffin Jr. stood in front of friends and relatives filling a Northeast Baltimore church yesterday to remember his wife, Bethany, and four children and stepchildren killed in an Ohio highway collision that police say was caused by a drunken driver.

"I still don't know to this day how I'm here, how Beau's here, how Sydney's here," said Griffin, of Parkville, referring to the two children who survived the Dec. 30 crash, in which he was injured. "I just want to thank all of you for all of your support. ... We've just been overwhelmed with the amount of support by our friends, the family, the country itself."

"It's just been an unreal and unbelievable experience for us all," said Griffin, addressing the packed pews at St. Luke Evangelical Lutheran Church. "I lost a wife and four kids, and it hurts me tremendously to even get up here and say that."
The lives of Bethany L. Griffin, 36; Jordan Griffin, 10; Vadie Griffin, 8 weeks; Haley Burkman, 10; and Lacie Burkman, 7, were celebrated in a memorial service yesterday, as friends and family stood to share their memories.

Griffin and his wife had been returning home to Parkville with the six children after spending the holidays with relatives in Michigan when their minivan was struck by a pickup truck heading the wrong way on Interstate 280.

Sydney Griffin, 8, was discharged Monday afternoon from St. Vincent Mercy Children's Hospital in Toledo, Ohio, spokeswoman Sarah Bednarski said - a fact that Griffin noted, sparking applause, at the church yesterday. Beau Burkman, 8, was released from the hospital a day after the crash.

Among the mourners yesterday were students and staff from Carney Elementary School, which the Burkman girls attended with their brother, Beau. Principal Eileen Roberta said a memorial to the children would be placed in the school courtyard.

Youngsters were given bottles of blowing bubbles during the children's portion of the service and told to use them to send their love to their friends. Haley and Lacie's favorite song from High School Musical, "We're All in This Together," was played.

Bethany Griffin's siblings recalled a woman passionate about family, politics and her country.

"I'm going to miss her every day for the rest of my life, especially on Election Day," one sister said.

Large photographs of Bethany Griffin and the four children were placed at the front of the sanctuary. A banner for writing messages spanned a "memorial wall" in the church, with a photograph of the family in the center. Many attending the service wore shades of blue, Bethany Griffin's favorite color.

"Do you know how many people are here?" said the Rev. Lisa Arrington, pastor of St. Luke. "There are people gathering with us all across the country."

She read messages of support posted online from people in Texas, Oklahoma, South Carolina and California. "I have never seen anything like this," she said.

The driver of the pickup that hit the van, Michael P. Gagnon, 24, of Adrian, Mich., appeared briefly in a Toledo courtroom yesterday for a preliminary hearing on five counts of aggravated vehicular homicide. The hearing was continued to tomorrow.

Police say Gagnon's blood-alcohol level was more than three times the legal limit when he slammed his truck into the family's minivan. The impact of the crash tore away the passenger side of the van, and several family members and their belongings were thrown from the vehicle.

Yesterday's memorial service was the scene of a demonstration by a group that was recently ordered to pay millions for protesting at the Westminster funeral of a soldier killed in Iraq.

Three members of the Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church, known for protests at military funerals, were demonstrating about a block from the church in the 7000 block of Harford Road.

The demonstrators said the deaths are God's retaliation against the community for the $11 million award by a jury in Baltimore against the Kansas group.

"It is shocking and horrible to even acknowledge that they're here," Arrington said of the demonstrators. "They do not reflect the Christian church. They do not reflect God's love or God's people."

Toward the end of the service, Griffin reiterated his thanks for the support his family has received throughout the tragedy.

"I just want all of you ... just embrace your kids and just remember how precious life really is and how things can change in a moment's notice," Griffin said. "Just appreciate everything you have with your kids and your families and friends."

01-10-2008, 07:33 PM
"I just want all of you ... just embrace your kids and just remember how precious life really is and how things can change in a moment's notice," Griffin said. "Just appreciate everything you have with your kids and your families and friends."

Something We should all think about.So,so sad.