I lost my brother unexpectedly last spring, and it was one of the most difficult times of my life. I live in San Francisco and my brother lives in Boston, but we were all each other had in the world. Our parents passed away when we were younger, so we remained close through our adult years.
Unfortunately, our jobs forced us to live across the country from one another. Video chat allowed my children to know their uncle, but I was always concerned for my brother because he was thirty-two, single, and had no children of his own.
I got the call about the car accident on a Sunday evening when I was cleaning up dinner for my family. It was three hours later there, and apparently, a drunk driver had run a red light and T-boned my brother’s car. He died on impact. I was devastated.
It took months for me to grieve the loss, but once I got my emotions in check, my husband made me realize that I needed to contact a Boston personal injury lawyer and file a wrongful death lawsuit against the drunk driver.
I was my brother’s closest living relative, so it was up to me to make sure my brother didn’t die in vain. My brother deserved justice for what happened to him and I wanted to obtain a settlement on his behalf. I didn’t know what I would do with the money, but I knew I had to fight for it.
Going to Trial
I initially spoke with my attorney in Boston over email and by phone. He did his best to gather information and evidence on my brother’s case while I stayed in San Francisco and took care of my family. It wasn’t until the trial began that I had to fly out to Boston and face the person responsible for my brother’s death.
I thought I would break down when I saw them standing on the other side of the courtroom, but at this point, I felt sorry for the driver. I could tell the man was remorseful and I simply hoped I could win the settlement our family deserved and move on from this traumatic experience.
The judge and jury ruled in my favor. All the evidence was stacked against the drunk driver, and he really didn’t have any way to defend himself.
I gave some of the settlement money to a charity to help families suffering with loved ones lost in car accidents. I also gave some of the money to another charity providing education on drunk driving. The rest of the money I put in a college fund for my children—I think that’s what my brother would’ve wanted.