Don’t text and drive. That’s the message a grieving family wants to spread.

On April 3rd, 2013 a 22-year-old student at the University of Northern Colorado lost his life because of sending a text while behind the wheel. His family is sharing this photo of the text message he never sent, in hopes of preventing future accidents caused by texting and driving.

This young man, Alexander Heit, was studying Audiology at UNC in Greeley, he had a spotless driving record, but a bad decision to reply to a text message ended his life.

Heit had been traveling eastbound on “O” Street from 35th Avenue, on a turn with a very narrow, dirt shoulder and a steep drop. Witnesses stated he seemed to have his head down, and began drifting into the oncoming lane of traffic. A westbound vehicle slowed and moved over just before Mr. Heit looked up. As he did, he jerked the steering wheel hard, over-correcting, resulting in his leaving the south side of the roadway, rolling and flipping the vehicle.

Heit was taken to North Colorado Medical Center, but was not able to survive his injuries.

Police found his mobile phone in the wreckage and on the screen was a text message received in the same minute as his crash, and this partial response that was never sent back:

Sounds good my man, seeya seon, ill tw

There is no way that message was worth the life of a human being. I can’t think of ANY text message that would be worth dying for.

Heit’s family is facing unimaginable grief, but they don’t want anyone else to ever have to feel the pain they are feeling now, so they are spreading the picture of this tragic text to urge others to not text while driving.

Heit’s mom said,

I can’t bear the thought of anyone else having to go through something like this. Please, vow to never, NEVER text and drive. In a split second you could ruin your future, injure or kill others, and tear a hole in the heart of everyone who loves you. And in honor of Alex’s memory, please do something kind for a stranger who needs help, as Alex always wished for a world where people were kinder to each other.

This is a tragically sad story and I can’t even fathom what this family must be going through, but please, heed their message. Please.

My condolences to Alexander’s friends and family. May he rest in peace.