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Cherry Hill, New Jersey

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A Lesson for the Holidays on Drinking and Driving

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If this story doesn’t scare you into not drinking and driving, I don’t know what can.

Last week, the construction worker who killed three people while driving drunk, including Nick Adenhart, an up-and-coming rookie pitcher for the Los Angeles Angels, was sentenced to 51 years in prison.

"You’re right. I am a horrible person, a drunk driver who took your beautiful kids away," said Andrew Gallo, 24, who was convicted last fall of three counts of second-degree murder and of drunken driving and hit-and-run driving, among others.

Prosecutors said Gallo, who was on parole for a felony DUI conviction, had a blood-alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit when he blew through a red light at 65 mph on April 9, 2009, and T-boned the car carrying pitcher Nick Adenhart and three friends.

Also killed were 20-year-old Courtney Stewart and 25-year-old Henry Pearson. A fourth passenger, Jon Wilhite, had his spine separated from his skull by the impact and survived. –SI.com

According to prosecutors, Gallo had beer and shots with his stepbrother at three different bars before driving that night.

Drinking and driving is no way to celebrate the holidays. As this story shows, it can all too easily end in tragedy that there’s no coming back from. Please learn from this terrible incident and don’t drink and drive, no matter what the circumstance.