Starlet Emma Roberts ditched the awards show glam and joined Justin Bieber and NASCAR stars Carl Edwards and Greg Biffle to appear on ABC Sunday’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” in honor of the Remember Alex Brown Foundation, a nonprofit organized after 17-year-old Alexandra Brown rolled her pickup truck and died on her way to school. She was texting and driving.
After being alerted that her daughter hadn’t made it to school, Alex’s mother Jeannie drove out to find the wreck of the truck. “Although no other vehicles were involved, Alex was not alone,” she writes on the Foundation’s official website. “The cell
phone on which she had sent and receive over 10,000 text messages in the
weeks preceding her accident was with her.”
Volunteers arrived at the Brown home in Lubbock, TX to rebuild their home – now occupied by the remaining three family members, Jeanne, Johnny Mac, and Alex’s 12-year-old sister Katrina a year after Alex’s death.
“If Alex was here and seeing all this she would be so excited for us,” Katrina told reporters. “She’d be like, ‘I’m so glad y’all are getting this! Y’all are doing good. Keep going.'”
The Browns decided to start the Remember Alex Brown Foundation the day she died. “I chose to do it that day at the hospital,” her father says. “We have to put the [wrecked] truck on a trailer and we have to go to schools and tell people about the dangers of texting and driving.”
“Extreme Makeover” asked Roberts to join in for two reasons. “She’s an incredible young actress,” said Ty Pennington, “and she’s a teen so she understands how big of an epidemic texting and driving is.”
“After hearing Alex’s story I just think texting and driving is really a problem,” Roberts says. “To hear that this happened to someone so young — that really kind of was a little bit of a wake-up call. I have a nine year old sister and to think of her losing me, or me losing her — I can’t even comprehend that.”