March 8, 2011

Former State Trooper Reaching Out to Senior Drivers' Families

By the time he retired from his post as an assistant district commander of the Ohio State Highway Patrol in 2005, Matt Gurwell's 24 years on the job had shown him just about every kind of trouble a driver could encounter.

Those experiences motivated him to launch Keeping Us Safe, LLC—and to author "Beyond Driving with Dignity; The workbook for the families of older drivers."

"It was the result of 20-plus years of holding dying people in my arms at terrible car accidents, and delivering dozens and dozens of death notifications to families," explains Matt.

"I would much rather work with families to bring a peaceful resolution to this sensitive and uncomfortable issue now, rather than have them deal with it when a state trooper is knocking on their front door."

As founder & CEO of Keeping Us Safe, LLC, Matt lectures throughout the United States on topics related to the aging process and its adverse affects on driving skills.

Since leaving the Patrol, he has participated in a tremendous amount of work in the area of older driver research, best practices, vehicle safety technologies, and adaptive equipment.

Matt's mission: Provide strategies and guidance to seniors that will help them drive safely until the decision is made to retire from driving. He also provides an array of services and resources for both families and professionals as they deal with this very sensitive issue.

"My experiences as a trooper enabled me to apply a creative, innovative and common sense approach—combined with the ability to bring calm and resolve to stressful situations—in delivering Keeping Us Safe's programs without jeopardizing the dignity of others," Matt says.

Talking with a senior loved one about his or her driving ranks high on the list of stressful situations many families face. Matt Gurwell's "Beyond Driving with Dignity; The workbook for the families of older drivers" can help take some of that stress away.

(Full disclosure: I'll make a small percentage when you get your copy through

After all those years managing accident scenes, Matt could have thrown in the towel after turning in his badge. Some of those memories couldn't be too pleasant.

That he chose instead to put his knowledge, skills and experience to work on behalf of the driving public—and senior drivers' families in particular—shows what kind of guy he is, as well as what level of priority this issue deserves: top-notch.

1 comment:

  1. The word “Stress” actually relates to wear and tear as when the rubber meets the road on a tire or the brake pads pressing up against the rotor in the wheel. The term as it applies to living organisms was first introduced by Hans Seyle in the 1930’s who defined it as the consequence of the failure of an organism (human or animal) to respond appropriately to emotional or physical threats, whether actual or imagined. Thus stress symptoms are the manifestation of a chronic state of responses to stress triggers that are actually benign. Even a thought can set off the same response mechanism that would be in play while standing in front of a hungry lion. Hence, Seyle’s definition still reaches to the heart of stress management; the idea of the response being inappropriate and engaging in a process of altering ones misperception of pending disaster or imminent danger.


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