BERWICK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) --
A Maine mother recently shared her story of how a distracted driver changed her family's life forever in hopes of influencing others to pay attention on the road.
Melissa Jean, of Berwick, said her 14-year-old son Tyler and 16-year-old Moriah were in the back of their father's car on June 19, 2016, headed for a Father's Day camping trip, when a driver rear-ended them on Route 101 in Hampton, NH.
Moriah suffered severe head and neck injuries, and Tyler suffered severe head injuries.
"I just remember rocking on the way to the hospital. To be honest, I never would have thought it would be this bad," said Jean. "The doctor came in and he said he wasn't hopeful."
Tyler was taken to Portsmouth Regional Hospital where doctors performed an emergency craniectomy, removing part of his skull to relieve the swelling in his head.
The State Police crash report contains a statement from the driver who hit the car they were in, Brady Hallahan, saying he was looking down at his radio when traffic slowed and he rear-ended them. Police charged Hallahan with following too closely.
"I still think about it every single day. Sometimes I have trouble sleeping at night because of it," said Hallahan. "Every day I wish I could go back – every single day. It was a complete accident. I was just a kid, and my whole life and your whole life changed in the blink of an eye and I'm so sorry."
Now, Tyler is in a "minimally conscious" state, according to his mother. Tyler cannot walk, talk, or eat on his own, and is confined to a bed for the majority of the day.
"Nobody can tell me how much, if at all, he will recover," said Jean. "He wanted to do so many things and he can't because somebody looked down at their radio," said Jean. "Even looking down for a second -- how much that can impact a family, how much that can impact somebody's future and the pain -- I want to share that."
Jean said Tyler has multiple home health aides, nurses, and physical and occupational therapists who visit the house to help in Tyler's recovery. She said trying to communicate with him can be difficult, and it can sometimes take dozens of times repeating the same command before he completes the action.
She said she works with him every day on small tasks, such as blinking his eyes or squeezing her hand, and when he does it, her world changes.
"I'm joyful. In a way, I can forget what I've lost," said Jean.
Jean is now trying to raise money for a handicap accessible van for her son. You can find more information here.
AAA released a national report saying that millennials (ages 19-24) are most likely to commit risky behaviors while driving -- 88 percent of people in this age group admit to texting, speeding, or running a red light in the past 30 days.