Getting arrested for a traffic violation is the last thing any driver would want to be in. It's one thing to violate a traffic law, but it's another thing to be caught drunk driving with a two-year-old toddler as a passenger.
Minnesota Trooper Kristie Sue Hathaway could not forget, even after ten years, the woman she arrested for DWI (Driving While Intoxicated). She pulled the car over of Amy Martin on Highway 77. "I went out and saw that she had watery, glassy eyes," Trooper Kristie said.
She also saw an opened bottle of Vodka at the center console of her car. It was also alarming to see her barely two-year-old daughter, Madeline, in the backseat, KARE-TV reported.
Madeline was sent home with her grandparents, and Amy went with the officer to the County Jail. At that time, Amy's alcohol level was three times higher than the legal limit.
Amy could not forget Trooper Kristie's advice. She said, "Please don't do this to your daughter. She needs a mom. I know because my mom left when I was 10." This police officer was raised by her aunt and uncle after her mom died. Her mom also struggled with alcoholism.
Amy wanted to see Kristie again after a year, only this time, she promised to be sober. But this police officer was in for a big surprise.
They met again after a year. Amy was not only sober, but she showed Kristie the 12 Steps Program's Sobriety medallion, proof that she had not touched alcohol for a year. "I want her to be able to see that and to kinda give it to her," Amy tearfully recalled.
This became a tradition for the police officer and traffic violator for several years. This mom kept on giving her annual medallion to Kristie on the date when she was arrested. Kristie would return to Amy the previous year's medallion in exchange for the recent one. The two became good, good friends.
The two friends also celebrated each other's milestones. Amy attended Kristie's marathon; they attended each other's weddings and had a lot of memories together. "She's part of my family now," Kristie said.
The award meant a lot to Kristie. She keeps it in her shirt pocket under her badge. "It changed my life, for sure," she said. "It's been a really tough couple [of] years in our field. There have been times when you kind of wonder like, 'Why am I in this job?' It reminds me of why. It gives me hope." Amy gave her tenth medallion to Kristie this year. This means that she has been sober for a decade now.
Amy was equally grateful for her encounter with Kristie a decade ago. She said, "If this wouldn't have happened, there is no question in my mind, I would not be here today," she told KARE-TV.
"She saved my life," Amy added. On the other hand, Madeline, who's now 12, appreciates and thanks her mom for making the right decision. "I'm glad that she made the choice to do what she did. And like, make a promise that she would do it and actually accomplish it."
Thanks to this concerned trooper who's not only doing her job but is also set to inspire people to become better. Because of her love and concern, a child was given the chance to grow up and be taken care of by a loving and changed mom.