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Mission teen on life support after Sunday accident

10/26/2009 - Themonitor.com - TX
Mission teen on life support after Sunday accident

PHARR – A 17-year-old Mission teen remained on life support Monday, a day after he was hit by a car while changing a tire along Expressway 83.

Gerardo Curiel Castillo and 35-year-old Ernesto Bedolla Cruz were struck at about 4:35 p.m. Sunday just west of the Expressway 83, U.S. 281 interchange. Bedolla was dead when police arrived, according to a press release.

Lt. Guadalupe Salinas, a spokesman for the Pharr Police Department described Curiel’s condition as “very serious.”

According to police, 23-year-old Benito Vasquez lost control of his sports utility vehicle and drifted toward the highway divider, where Curiel and Bedolla had pulled off the road to change a flat tire. Vasquez struck the pair, sending them flying over the median and onto the eastbound lanes, according to police.

Vehicles in the opposite lane managed to avoid the pair when they fell to the road. Vasquez struck the median wall and spun around. His injuries were not life threatening, according to police.

The crash shut down both lanes of the expressway until about 6 p.m.

Vasquez has told police that he swerved and lost control of his SUV to avoid another out-of-control vehicle. Police are still investigating and could not say Monday if there was another vehicle involved.

No charges have been filed.


Sean Gaffney covers business, the economy and general assignments for The Monitor. He can be reached at (956) 683-4434.

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