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5K run held for student killed in alcohol-related crash

Posted January 12, 2008
Updated January 10, 2009

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— Runners took part in a race Saturday in honor of a Wakefield High School student who died in an alcohol-related crash.

Sadiki Young, 18, was killed on Jan. 13, 2007, when the Ford Escort he was riding in crashed on Wakefield Plantation Drive near Village Spring Road.

Driver Christopher John Palmeri, 18, pleaded guilty in August to involuntary manslaughter and drunken-driving. He was sentenced to 16 to 20 months in prison, with all but five months suspended.

Investigators said Palmeri had a blood-alcohol level of 0.06 percent but that speed was the primary factor in the crash. Palmeri had been driving at 72 mph at the time of the accident, they determined.

Organizers of the 5K run said they wanted to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving.

Young's mother said she was moved by the 700 people who participate in the downtown Raleigh event.

“I realize how much he touched people and you know you could live a long lifetime and not do what he did in 18 years,” Rosemarie Newman said.

Race proceeds will go to a local church youth fund and Wakefield High School's "Think First" program.


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  • hedgy_one Jan 14, 2008

    I think this was a nice gesture, but it surely did cause a lot of traffic problems for people not aware of what was going on! I was trying to go to the Museum of History to see the Lost Colony exhibition and was detoured around so much that it took me an HOUR to finally reach the visitor parking lot up from the museum. The frustration was enough to make someone drink! Ha! Ha! (a little sarcastic joking there...) But, I ate 4 hot Krispy Kremes instead! Aiiiiiii!!!!!

  • JuanGrande v3.0 Jan 13, 2008

    How much more money needs to be dumped into "education" of teens not to drink and drive? I'm sorry but I have little patience for kids doing stupid stuff that they know will get them killed. If they want to kill themselves off then so be it but don't take me with you.

  • childfreeinrdu Jan 13, 2008

    "Race proceeds will go to a local church youth fund . . ." When I was in my church's youth group, we used our youth fund to buy beer. But we drank responsibly, in the church basement, and used a designated driver.

  • anonemoose Jan 13, 2008

    Let us not forget that Young wasn't an innocent driver going down the road minding his own buisness and was killed by a drunk driver. He made an informed choice to get in a car with somebody that he knew was underage and had been drinking.

    Seven words and he would still be alive. "No thanks, I'll ride with somebody sober."

  • childfreeinrdu Jan 13, 2008

    Seems to me that the kids themselves did an excellent job of "raising awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving" when they got themselves killed. I don't quite see the point of having a "fun run" to commemorate irresponsible teen behavior. Oh, and of course my thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the runners, or the victims, or whatever. God Bless!

  • GALNC Jan 13, 2008

    All victims of drunk drivers are remembered, but this family chose to honor his memory and raise money to cause awareness of the issue. My heart goes out to his family/friends for choosing to remember him in such a giving way to benefit others.

  • dont_preach Jan 13, 2008

    Killian- very well said!

  • Killian Jan 13, 2008

    Is there a reason you had to come be an imbecile with regard to this story? No one said that other victims of drunk drivers didn't mean anything. But this group decided to be pro-active and raise money for an education fund to try and prevent the next kid from getting killed.

    Go crawl back under your rock.

  • denverbob234 Jan 13, 2008

    I guess everyone else killed by some drunk fool has no importance?

  • clintoflannagan Jan 13, 2008

    That is awesome. I wish I had known about it. Congrats to all the runners for supporting this cause.