Chris Gonzalez will never forget what happened Friday night. He was one of the first to respond after a truck crashed head onto an 18-wheeler on I-10 near Camp Bullis Road.
"At first I was really shocked and shaken and kinda reliving experiences I did in Iraq," said Gonzales.
With shards of glass still in his hands, Gonzales keeps replaying the accident scene in his head. He said after serving three tours overseas and receiving a Purple Heart in the Army, that muscle memory made him try to save the family in the truck.
"I literally ripped the door off, yanked the clutch pedal after I cut around his jeans, so I could see what was going on. Shortly after that is when EMS came. "
But his experience in the Army Infantry wasn't enough to save 41-year-old Gary Carruth and his 13-year-old daughter Sommer Jewel Carruth.
Carruth's two other children, ages eight and four, were both flown to University Hospital. Gonzales said he prayed for his fallen brother at the scene.
"I feel honored that another veteran like myself to another was able to bless him off as if we were in combat. For Gary, I believe that is the greatest honor that someone there was able to care for him."
Gonzales said he would do it all over again if he had to. His heart breaks for the fiance left behind and his two other children who remain hospitalized.
"I pray that you all continue to live a prosperous life and eventually one day heal from this."