User uShare Login | Register

Along with posting photos, videos, and stories, your uShare account lets you post Classified Ads, recipes on What's For Dinner, and Announcements.

30° View Weather Current Conditions Sioux Falls Change Location
Set Weather Options



 Winter Storm for November 30, 2015

Snow Outlook

Severe Weather

State Radar

Click here for local closings & delays

Send photos to

Storm Center Update | Sioux Falls News & Weather, South Dakota News & Weather, Minnesota and Iowa News

[0] My Saved Articles
Find local businesses
on the KELO Pages!


Panel Discusses Dangers Of Teen Alcohol Abuse

March 28, 2011, 10:32 PM by David Brown

Panel Discusses Dangers Of Teen Alcohol Abuse
HARTFORD, SD - With prom and graduation parties coming up soon, the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse among teenagers are at the forefront. And for one KELOLAND school, the consequences hit especially close to home.

18-year-old West Central High School student Dustin Holter died in May 2006 driving home from a graduation party. Alcohol and high speed were determined to be factors in the crash. And five years later, West Central's determined to drive home its message to prevent another situation like that from happening again.

For the past four years, Hartford parent Orlin Punt has attended the annual West Central Town Hall meeting.

"Like every parent that has a daughter or son out there driving, we really don't want to have that phone call or visit during the night saying your child's been in an accident," Orlin Punt said.

Punt has four sons, ranging from ages 9 to 15.

"My second oldest, Joshua, he's going to start driving here next year," Punt said. "So, for me, it's important for him to see what effects drinking has."

"It's a good experience," Joshua Punt said. "You learn a lot and I'm taking drivers ed next year, so it just teaches me more and more."

For more than an hour, a diverse panel of counselors, parents and even recovering addicts talked about the consequences of alcohol and illegal drug use.

"We want to be able to reach out to everybody and have the services available to them," West Central High School counselor Michelle Pliska said. "That they know where to go to when they run into risky situations where they'd like some help or they're worried about a friend."

The group covered a wide variety of issues. And while it's too early to tell whether the message was effective, West Central counselor Michelle Pliska says the open dialogue is a start.

"I think we're planting seeds," Pliska said. "We might not solve everything right here and right now at this town hall, but we're planting seeds for students to refer back to."

Punt says one reason he's come to the meeting four straight years is not only so his kids can learn, but he can learn as well. He says the panel's have offered different strategies and tips on how to talk to his kids about alcohol and drugs.

Previous Story

Next Story



You may also like

Ronald Neels Sentenced To 75 Years In Prison

11/23/2015 5:59 PM

For more than a decade, nobody knew Ronald Neels was sexually abusing a victim inside his home near Garretson. The victim never said anything about th...

Full Story | Watch
Harrisburg High School Wins $100,000

11/25/2015 9:01 AM

Students at Harrisburg High School are celebrating Wednesday morning.

Full Story
Tyrese Ruffin's Mother Speaks Publicly For First Time

11/25/2015 6:18 AM

In her first and only television interview, Doohen talked about her son, who she called the joy of her life.

Full Story
LHS Student Charged With Making Bomb Threat

11/23/2015 10:53 AM

Sioux Falls Police said a 16-year-old student wrote a message on a bathroom mirror.

Full Story
Police Arrest Man In Indianapolis Woman's Slaying

11/23/2015 6:36 AM

18-year-old Larry Taylor of Indianapolis has been arrested on a preliminary charge of murder in the death of 28-year-old Amanda Blackburn.

Full Story