SMYTH COUNTY, Va. - One week ago Friday, two teens were air-lifted to the hospital after a race car fell off the back of a truck colliding with oncoming traffic on Interstate 81.
The victims experienced broken bones and surgeries, with a long road of rehabilitation before things are back to normal.
We sat down with crash survivor 17-year-old Jessica Jones, she says while she doesn't remember much of the crash, she owes her life to a tractor trailer driver that made a split-second decision.
Teddy bears, balloons, and "Get Well Soon" cards, it seems there just can't be enough well wishes for 17-year-old Jessica Jones. That's because one week ago, she was in a frightening accident, "I fractured my hip, six ribs, two bones in my hand, one bone in my wrist, and my nose was almost amputated."
For those worried about her, Jones says she's doing much better. "I just feel lucky. Not really scared," she said.
But this accident is something straight out of a nightmare. A run-away race car traveling south on I-81 fell of the back of a truck, crossed the interstate, and slammed into oncoming traffic. Jones says she only remembers bits and pieces, "The first thing I remember after passing the Chilhowie Exit is a little bit in the wings helicopter."
Her mom, Stephanie, is an emergency first-responder, she wasn't working that night but says she'll never forget how she heard the news every mother dreads, "I had heard the call on the radio there was a bad wreck. Shortly after that the deputy called me and said my daughter had been involved."
It's been a tough week and there's still a lot of healing. "It's amazing that we have her here, it could have been a lot worse," added her mom.
That's because the family credits a split-second decision by the driver of a tractor trailer, swerving to the right to miss the pick-up truck Jones was riding in. "It was a hard decision for him but if he wouldn't have we would have easily died," said the teen.
And her mom is simply grateful, "How do you thank someone for saving your child's life?"
Jones says she's all finished with surgery, she's just waiting to get her stitches out and she's looking forward to things getting back to normal.