In the Car With Their Drunk Dad, These Kids Did the Unthinkable to Save Themselves

Mackenzie and Ethan Behrens, ages 14 and 12, were looking forward to going to Colorado for vacation with their dad. But their excitement quickly turned to fear when they realized their dad, Jason Behrens, was drunk and driving erratically.

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“We told him we don’t want to go anymore because you are drunk and I don’t want to die,” Mackenzie told KUTV.

But Behrens denied being intoxicated and kept driving. They kids were soon frightened for their lives, and got desperate enough that they did what no kids should have to do—they turned in their own dad.

“When a car passed, you could hear how close it was,” said Ethan. The siblings said that their dad was swerving dangerously, and that finally they said to each other that if he swerved one more time, they were going to text 911.

“He swerved again so I pressed send,” said Mackenzie.

As they were texting back and forth with 911, the kids were able to convince their dad to stop at a Burger King to get some food. It was there that the police caught up with them and Jason Behrens was taken into custody.

Despite telling his kids that he wasn’t drunk, police said Behrens’ blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit.

Mackenzie and Ethan saved themselves, but they do have mixed feelings about turning in their own dad, though they know it was the RIGHT thing to do.

“He’s our parent, our other parent. It was hard, but he just pushed us to the point that we had to,” said Ethan.

My heart breaks for these brave kiddos! I am SO thankful they’re safe, but I’m grieved that they had to turn in their own dad for drunk driving. I pray this is a wake-up call to him to get his life straightened out and be a responsible, loving dad for his kids.


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Jenny Rapson
Jenny Rapson is a follower of Christ, a wife and mom of three from Ohio and a freelance writer and editor. You can find her at her blog, Mommin' It Up, or follow her on Twitter.