When three-year-old Ryan Walsh was hit by an 84-year-old driver, his mother, Katherine, did something that most people would find difficult (if not impossible) to do.
“I put myself in the shoes of the older gentleman who was in the car. I wouldn’t want to be the person who ran over a child,” she says. “It was a horrible situation for everyone involved and he shouldn’t have been behind the wheel. So I asked myself, how did it happen? Why was he driving when he shouldn’t be driving?”
This line of questioning led Freund down several paths towards a potential solution for preventing other families’ lives from being turned upside down by an unsafe older driver. First, she considered trying to create a fool-proof test to screen for hazardous drivers and prevent them from operating a motor vehicle. But even a perfectly-developed driving evaluation wouldn’t address the important underlying issue of an older adult’s desire to remain mobile and independent.