The West Virginia University Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center issued the following news release:

The West Virginia University Department of Community Medicine in conjunction with Parker Hall State Farm Insurance Agencies will sponsor a silent memorial for all the 2009 victims of alcohol-related automobile fatalities in West Virginia from 11 p.m. to midnight on Thursday, Oct. 6.

The event, which will take place on High Street in Downtown Morgantown, will include 115 student volunteers from various academic disciplines across the University paying tribute to each death through a silent candlelit vigil.

"While alcohol-related automobile fatalities have decreased in recent years, the issue remains a major public health concern with an estimated 4,922 arrested for driving under the influence during 2010 in West Virginia," Ruth Kershner, Ed.D., professor in the Department of Community Medicine and alcohol educator for the WVU School of Medicine (, said.

For more information, contact Dr. Kershner at 304-293-7440 or