Husband of victims of drunken driver asks people to take pledge to not drink and drive

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SEATTLE —

On Tuesday, Dan Schulte spoke with reporters for the first time about the crash that killed his parents and sent his wife and newborn son into critical condition. 

See entire news conference

“Things like this shouldn’t happen, and they are preventable, “ Schulte said at Children’s Hospital in Seattle, where his son Elias is recovering.

 On March 25, Dan Schulte's life changed forever.  A drunken driver crashed into his family in Seattle’s Wedgwood neighborhood.  It was just 10 days after Elias was born.

"The first ten days I could say were the best ten days of my life.  And then the next ten days were the worst ten days of my life," said Schulte.

 Doctors said Elias had severe head trauma and his tiny body was in shock when medics brought him in.  But Dr. Francois Apesberro, a UW Physician, said the infant defied doctors' predictions, and survived.

“He's been surprising us.  He came off the machine that's helping him breathe.  His seizures have stopped," said Apesberro.

 But Elias suffered a severe brain injury and it's unknown if he'll develop normally.

The boy's mother, Karina Schulte, fractured her skull and pelvis when she was hit by the car.  She then suffered a stroke the next day, while in intensive care.

 "She recognizes people.  She knows who I am.  And like the doctors have said, it's hard to tell what ultimately the outcome will be," said her husband, Dan Schulte.

Schulte didn’t have much to say about Mark Mullen, the man accused of crashing into his family.  Police said Mullen’s blood alcohol level was .22 at the time of the crash.  Schulte said DUI laws need to be harsher to prevent crashes like this.   Mullen had a string of drunk driving convictions and was driving on a suspended license at the time of the crash.

 Schulte also asked people to take a pledge to not drink and drive.

 The family has asked that people wanting to help can make donations to the following funds set up at Homestreet Bank:

 Karina & Elias Ulriksen-Schulte Medical Fund

Dennis & Judy Schulte Memorial Fund