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The MADD Canada Campaign was born following the death of my brother, Paul Brizzi, on August 17, 2019.
Paul’s killer walked around free for almost 2 years until he was sentenced. On April 23, 2021, Her Honourable Mary L. Hogan placed an unjust sentence of only 6.5 years on the killer, whom I refuse to name. Judge Mary Hogan deemed Paul’s life to be worth ONLY 6.5 years. Paul would have been 46 in 6.5 years. Here is my disheveled take on the verdict.
With the MADD Canada campaign, I am able to speak to politicians about laws and the excruciating need to change them. My media circuit grants me the ability to speak about sentencing and the responsibility a judge has to make an example out of people that continue to drive impaired and those that enable them to do it, whether that is a friend, a spouse or society.
We cannot expect change if we are unwilling to contribute to the solution. I never in my life expected my life’s contribution would be at the expense of losing the man I unconditionally loved, as if he were my own child. Maybe because in some ways, he was.
The following is part of our Crown’s opening submissions:
On Saturday afternoon, August 17th, 2019, Rakunath KANAGARATNAM, was operating a motor vehicle, a grey Toyota. Prior to choosing to operate his motor vehicle, Mr. Kanagaratnam consumed 7/8 of a bottle of Crown Royal whiskey.
Mr. Paolo Brizzi, a 39-year-old resident of Toronto, had just left his friend’s home and was driving a black Infiniti. Mr. Brizzi, did not consume any alcohol and in fact, family members describe him as never drinking alcohol. In a video clip captured from the home video system of Mike Curcio, Mr. Paolo Brizzi, can be seen leaving his friend’s home and getting into his Black Infinity at approximately 4:28pm.
From his friend’s house, Mr. Brizzi drove his car onto the 401 westbound collector’s lanes entering from the Keele St entrance.
Within minutes Mr. Brizzi was dead.
Following Paul’s death I did a lot of press. My objective was to bring attention to this very violent, PREVENTABLE death.
In 2020, I decided to use my platform to bring awareness to a VERY important cause, the prevention of Impaired Driving. I teamed up with MADD Canada and started my MADD Campaign. It brings awareness to graduates and their families as they embark on a new chapter of their lives.
Young people’s voices carry far and wide and if I can inflict change in ONE of them and they in turn inflict change on ONE person and so on and so on, we can make a huge wave of change together.
We are devastated about Paul’s death. Everyday is like Groundhog Day. We will never be able to fill the void that has been left in our souls. I do not want another family to feel this unsettling pain.
Our T-Shirts do not only symbolize a monetary goal to give to MADD Canada but a constant reminder that we can make positive changes so that another family does not have to endure such tragedy.
$10 from every MADD purchase goes directly to MADD Canada.