REAL COUNTY, TX - The man who recorded the video showing a white pickup truck swerving before tragically crashing into a church bus shared his first-hand account with KENS 5.
State troopers said the truck involved in the death of 13 people was driven by 20-year-old Jack Dillon Young.
The witness, Jody Kuchler, said that a passenger recorded the reckless driving while he kept a safe distance. He was one of the first people on the scene of the crash.
"He kept going off the road and over into incoming traffic,” Kuchler said. “There was a couple of cars and trucks that actually got off on the shoulder to keep from being hit,"
For 20 long minutes, they watched and recorded the scene in horror as a driver swerved all over the road.
"We noticed he started drifting off to the side of the road and he got in the grass and then he came back up on the road,"
The couple was in Uvalde County, but approaching Real County, as they witnessed the gut-wrenching scene.
"We're talking about safety. Somebody needs to get this guy off the road," Kuchler said to the operator.
Kuchler burned with quiet fury when he said that the Real County Sheriff's office refused to send help.
"He just said, ‘It's not in Real County,’" Kuchler said.
Moments later, the phone stopped recording the action but the couple saw it all: The crash, the aftermath, and the question.
"There was nowhere else he could go and the truck hit the bus head on in their lane," Kuchler said.
Kuchler said that in the chaos he recalls the atmosphere as a few people clinched onto life inside of the bus.
"The only thing he said to me is, ‘I'm sorry, I was texting,’ and he asked for help,” Kuchler recalled.
Kuchler said that he did not smell intoxicants on the driver and that his speech was not slurred, so he doubts alcohol was a factor.
He believes a combination of excessive speed and inattention led to this week’s tragedy.
Twenty minutes of distraction led to a lifetime of consequences for so many.
"Something we'll never forget."
For the raw video, watch below or click here:
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