Oak Brook Woman Works Hard to Keep Drunken Drivers off the Road

Article excerpt

Byline: Helena Effgen

Being involved in any automobile accident is an unnerving experience. To be a victim in an accident when another driver is intoxicated is devastating.

Oak Brook's Pat Larson is an angel of mercy for victims with the not-for-profit organization Alliance Against Intoxicated Motorists.

Larson's mission is twofold - to provide counseling in a variety of areas for victims and to promote prevention of accidents involving drunk drivers.

Little did Larson realize that experiences with prevention of driving while intoxicated would lead to her life's passion. As an alderman in Elmhurst in 1982, she was named the city's DUI coordinator.

"Funds had become available and Elmhurst had some of the worst intersections in the state. I headed up the team working toward awareness and prevention and it worked," Larson said. "Realizing that this type of accident is preventable, seeing first-hand the devastation it causes, I became obsessed with doing something about it."

Eight years later, Larson was asked to join AAIM and her focus shifted to include actively helping victims and their families and promoting victims' rights. …