Kaylyn Migues is a huge hit with a message!
Spreading hope — Monster truck driver sends positive message before Saturday’s event at Holt Arena
Migues — the youngest female monster truck driver in the country at 19 years old — is driving Jailbird in the Monster Truck Grand Nationals on Saturday at Holt Arena.
But on Friday, she was taking pictures with kids and signing autographs at Family Services Alliance for Crush Out Child Abuse, an event aimed at raising awareness for child abuse prevention.
Child abuse and domestic violence issues aren’t the only ways Migues chooses to be an advocate. She’s also passionate about suicide prevention.
Migues was a junior in high school when two of her friends took their own lives. To commemorate them, their names are printed on the inside of her truck, serving as reminders to Migues wherever she rides.
And on the side of Jailbird is a decal of a woman dressed in the classic orange prison jumpsuit. On her arm is the tattoo of a semicolon — a symbol that signifies suicide awareness and prevention.
Migues says her advocacy of suicide prevention has had a wide impact, and she’s happy she’s been able to spread her message through the world of motorsports.
“It feels like sometimes you don’t always feel like it’s making a difference until you have that one special kid that comes up to you and says, ‘You inspire me,’” Migues said. “I’ve had a lot of people come up to me and say, ‘You made a difference. You caused me to go get help.’”
The event at Family Services Alliance gave folks an opportunity to meet and hang out with Migues, but it also allowed the organization’s executive director, Sarah O’Banion, a chance to inform community members about what Family Services Alliance provides. There are programs and services that include providing healing after experiencing domestic violence incidents, therapy assistance for children and support groups for kids and teenagers.
The Crush Out Child Abuse event Friday with Migues was the perfect way to start Family Services Alliance’s slate of events.
“(Migues) is a strong advocate for child abuse prevention, … and she feels really strongly about suicide awareness and suicide prevention,” O’Banion said. “We really have a similar mission in that we’re all about supporting kids and families.”
Migues began driving monster trucks two years ago and was led to the sport by her dad, Darren, who’s driven monster trucks for the past 12 years. Darren will drive his truck, Nitro Menace, on Saturday and will be joined by monster trucks such as Bigfoot, Ghost Ryder, Girl Power and Illuminator. The event begins at 7:30 p.m.
For Migues, she hopes to put on a great show and give the crowd plenty to cheer for. But her passion for motivating tomorrow’s generation is just as strong and powerful as the monster truck she climbs into.
“Anyone can do whatever they want to do — whether that’s a doctor, a veterinarian or a monster truck driver,” Migues said. “You can do anything you set your mind to. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t.”