LOUISE, Texas — In a little town called Louise, good people brag about great memories.
“It’s nice because everybody knows each other,” Flora De Leon said.
But along with the good memories, they also have the bad.
De Leon’s son, Dusty Ochoa, died riding in a car with a drunk driver nearly two years ago.
“It’s going on two years already, but it’s still hard,” De Leon said. “It’s hard on everyone that was close to him.”
That includes his classmates, who on Friday were decorating their school gym for prom night.
“He was a friend. A great guy to hang around with,” junior Matthew Blumrick said.
Louise school administrators are taking an extraordinary step to make sure Ochoa’s classmates who go to prom make it home safely.
“I’ll have a deputy here, the breathalyzer people will be here. I’ll have the drug dogs up front,” Louise ISD Superintendent Andy Peters said as he toured the location of the dance.
This year, anyone who goes to the prom will be required to pass a breathalyzer test.
It’s an idea that’s drawn mixed reactions from students.
“I think it’s a great idea,” junior Rachel Aguirre said.
“Everybody is kind of ready for it. They know what to expect,” student Brittney Taylor said.
“We feel they don’t trust us. That we have to prove ourselves,” student John Duke said.
Parents who plan to attend the prom will have to pass the test too.
“If we are going to test our kids, I think we need to be the first ones in the door,” parent Debbie Koudela said.
In fact, Dusty Ochoa’s mom is going to the prom and plans to take the test herself.
In another effort to crack down on drunken driving, HPD and 15 other police agencies have launched a campaign to deal with the number of local car crashes.
They are posting the faces of DWI violators on the Internet in the hopes they can save a life – a life like that of Flora De Leon’s son, Dusty.