Hit-and-run victim believes she was saved by her grandmother
A McAllen mother is counting her blessings after a car accident came to a stop in front of a church.
Heather Garza believes her grandmother up in heaven saved her.
"When I was a little girl my grandmother used to bring me out here, we would walk the track and she would tell me she would pray for my safety here," Garza said.
The place Garza is talking about is the Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle.
Garza's Friday night started off at the fashion show she was working as a make up artist.
Her two friends Lucia Castillo and Valery Prado were there supporting her.
Afterwards they went for some drinks in downtown San Juan.
Garza offered to not drink and be the designated driver.
The girls night out ended in a hit-and-run on West Expressway 83.
"I just remember the car spin and spin," Garza said. "I could see the medium right in front of me during one of those turns and I said to myself this is where I die."
30-year-old Garza remembers the events leading up to the crash vividly.
The second she saw a black Chevrolet in her rear view mirror the car hit them.
"Wow, that guy is going really fast and he hit us right as I said fast," Garza said.
The car Garza was driving started spinning.
Garza didn't hit the brakes because she knew that would be worse.
"All I could think about was never seeing my husband, never seeing my children again," Garza said. "The lives of the two people that were in the car with me, I was responsible for them and this is it, I am done."
When the spin out ended, Heather opened her eyes and the first thing she saw was the image of Jesus at the San Juan Shrine.
Thankfully, Garza or her two friends didn TMt suffer any critical injuries.
The San Juan Police Department quickly found the driver who fled.
20-year-old Juan Maldonado was found between frontage road and North Stewart.
Sergeant Rolando Garcia tells Action 4 that Maldonado was charged with hit-and-run and accident involving damage.
Since the incident, Maldonado has been released from jail.