CASA GRANDE, Ariz. — Dozens of Christmas carolers in Casa Grande are recovering after a speeding driver plowed into their trailer. The impact sent several people flying off the trailer and into the street.
Somehow, everyone survived, and members of the New Life Baptist Church are calling it a Christmas miracle.
“I saw a body laying in the road. I didn’t know it was her," said Jenessa McIntyre, whose family was out caroling.
“The wheel went over my right leg and missed my left leg," said 12-year-old Serena McIntyre.
The terrifying story began Sunday afternoon. Sixty-two Christmas carolers from New Life Baptist Church piled into a 30-foot trailer, the same one they've used for the past several years. They drove to different neighborhoods to spread holiday cheer.
“We just want to be a blessing to families. Make them smile. Let them know there’s a church out here that loves them," said Pastor Ray McCormick.
Their night of caroling came to an end around 6 p.m. But just as they turned onto Ghost Ranch Road to drive back to their cars, disaster struck.
“I saw the car coming towards me and I was thinking, 'He’s not gonna stop,'" said Jenessa.
An SUV slammed into the back of the exposed trailer, sending the carolers flying.
“It was almost like it was slow motion. I saw girls falling and rolling into the road," said Robin McCormick.
One of those girls was Serena McIntyre. Her leg had been run over.
“I just tried to keep her calm and keep her from going unconscious and just tried to figure out how bad she was hurt," said Jenessa, Serena's mom.
Medics rushed Serena and others, including a girl with a fractured face, to the hospital.
“As soon as we got there they did the X-rays and then just the waiting of, 'What actually happened? How bad is it?'" Jenessa said.
Serena's parents expected the worst, but despite the gruesome scene, every caroler is now out of the hospital recovering at home. Serena's family calls it a Christmas miracle.
“How did she get run over so perfectly that she didn’t break any bones? There are so many miracles that are just unexplained," Jenessa said.
Casa Grande police are still investigating the crash but say speed is definitely a factor.
The church group says they have no ill will toward the driver and are just thankful to be alive.
“We hugged him. We prayed with him. We cried with him. He was very devastated he made a mistake and made a wrong choice and we all do," said Pastor Ray McCormick.
Police say it doesn't appear the driver was impaired. They plan on recommending the driver be charged with failure to control speed to avoid a collision.
The church group plans on continuing this Christmas tradition next year.