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Couple recovering from horrific holiday crash

Posted at 11:32 PM, Jan 03, 2017

A young El Cajon couple spent their New Year's Eve in the hospita, recovering from a horrific crash.

"I was missing a piece of my face right here," 19-year-old Reuben DeHoyos said.

His wounds are hard to look at, but it was even harder for him to see his girlfriend, 17-year-old Sierra Marco, in pain.

"I hit the steering wheel, and then my head right here on the stitches hit the windshield," DeHoyos said. "And then my girl, she had an airbag and I didn't."

The accident happened Christmas Eve right after they left a family dinner, less than two blocks away at Mollison Avenue and Peach Avenue. DeHoyos said he was approaching an intersection when a car tried to beat him across and he slammed into it.

Reuben had to have surgery to fix the damages to his face. Doctors graphed skin from his ear onto his left eyelid and he had over 500 stitches and 17 staples.

"I never even thought that many could go in my face," DeHoyos said. "Christmas Day and New Year's. Yeah, it was the worst holiday of my life."

10News talked to Sierra from her hospital bed at Sharp Memorial. She says she doesn't remember much about the crash, only that she was fighting for two.

"I kept saying 'I'm pregnant, I'm pregnant, make sure my baby's ok,' that's all I kept talking about," Sierra said.

Sierra suffered a collapsed lung and doctors inserted a chest tube. She says she is tremendously sore and uncomfortable with lower body nerve damage. She's nine weeks pregnant.

"Very thankful. Very thankful," Sierra said. "It could have been bad, they said we shouldn't have made it. But thank god we did and the baby's ok."

Doctors had to place another chest tube in, and it's possible she might have to have surgery. DeHoyos said doctors estimate it will be six months to a year before either one of them can go back to work.

"I work for construction so I can't do nothing, no type of dust or no hard work because if I hit my head it's back at square one," DeHoyos said. "So it's a lot to take in, I mean I'm going through a lot but I'm just glad we're both here and the baby's fine. I'm just going to be a dad so that would have been heartbreaking if I had lost everything."

DeHoyos also says they only had their car for three days before it was totaled in the crash. The family does have some insurance, but it won't cover all of their medical bills and expenses. Their baby is due in August, so the family has set up a GoFundMe account to try and help the young couple.