Former volleyball player to speak on the dangers, risks of drunken driving

Almost 10 years ago, Sarah Panzau was nearly killed after her car spun out of control following a night of drinking with friends.

She was driving home in August 2003, missed an exit and rolled her car four times. Thirty surgeries later, the Illinois native and former junior college volleyball player is scheduled to speak at 10 am. Aug. 14 at Cowley College in Arkansas City.

Her appearance is being sponsored by Ark Valley Distributing, an Anheuser-Busch wholesaler. The company sponsors the Living Proof program, which works to discourage underage drinking and drunken driving.

“Every time I speak to students, I want them to understand the importance of making good decisions and how choices have consequences — sometimes for a lifetime,” Panzau said in a news release.

Panzau was not wearing a seat belt at the time of her accident and was ejected through the car’s rear window. Her left arm was so badly mangled, much of it had to be amputated.