HAWTHORNE (CBSLA) — Mixed martial arts fighter Marcus Kowal is pushing for stricter drunk driving laws in the name of his 15-month-old son, who was struck and killed by a drunk driver.
Liam Kowal was in his stroller two years ago when Donna Marie Higgins plowed into him and his aunt, who was pushing him through the crosswalk two years ago.
Liam was found without a pulse and not breathing, and was taken off life support three days later. His aunt survived.
Higgins was later sentenced to six years in prison. Police say she had mixed alcohol and prescription medication.
Kowal has retired from competition but is taking on this new fight in memory of his son.
“Ultimately, this fight in Liam’s name is to save other children and other families from having to go through what we’ve gone through,” he said.
Kowal and his wife are pushing lawmakers to drop the legal blood alcohol content level for driving in California from .08 to .05.
To help with this fight, Kowal has started a non-profit called Liam’s Life. He says it’s needed, with DUI arrests up this Labor Day weekend to 969, from 959 a year ago.
“Sometimes culture changes policy, but right now we need policy to change the culture,” Kowal’s wife Mishel Eder said.