October 13, 2013 remains one of the darkest days of my life. My family of five was enjoying the last day of our Carnival cruise in the Caribbean when tragedy struck in a matter of minutes: my six-year-old son Qwentyn drowned in a pool. Although it breaks my heart, I have come to terms with the fact that I got distracted and let this happen. Accidents happen, and that’s why I couldn’t believe that most cruise lines do not employ lifeguards on ships. With all the activities occurring on a ship deck at any given time, I believe that properly trained lifeguards — acting as an extra set of eyes and ears — will help to save more kids’ lives. It has taken me some time to pull myself together to start this petition, but I felt that I had to do it so that other families don’t have to go through what my family and I have during the last year. I’m here to ask Carnival Corporation and the cruise line industry to employ lifeguards to provide greater passenger safety onboard ships. Research shows that nearly two million passengers under 18 board cruises each year. Many cruise travelers can probably relate to the distracting nature of the deck — music, people, water activity, entertainment and noise are all constant. Despite this, only Disney puts lifeguards on its ships, a decision made shortly after our son’s passing. The cruise industry brought $42 billion in economic activity to the U.S. in 2012, so why can’t it require that companies hire lifeguards to ensure greater safety? Make no mistake, parental supervision should always be a priority, but it’s clear to me and many others that the presence of lifeguards can only help to protect lives. Please sign our petition so we can make this important change sooner than later.Thanks for your support!