‘It came from behind us,’ one of the OSU homecoming crash victims talks about the ‘chaos’

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OKLAHOMA CITY– Mark McNitt says he and his wife along with his mom and stepfather were enjoying the parade in Stillwater Saturday morning.

McNitt says at the end of the parade he felt a gush of wind and the then a sound. He said it sounded like a bomb and then there was chaos.

He is talking about the moment a car driven by 25 year old Adacia Chambers slammed into the parade crowd.

Mark McNitt, stepfather Leo Schmitz injured in OSU homecoming parade crash
Mark McNitt, stepfather Leo Schmitz injured in OSU homecoming parade crash

McNitt says his stepfather, Leo Schmitz had been standing next to him prior to the crash but when he looked over after, he wasn’t there. He said he was off the side.

“Lot (sic)  going on, I’m just one person. I went to help Leo, made sure he was breathing and had a pulse and there were 100 people doing the same thing,” said McNitt at a Sunday morning news conference at OU Medical Center in Oklahoma City.

Schmitz, 54, is in critical condition. Neither the family nor the doctors would go into detail into his injuries, but his family says he is heavily sedated and is doing OK. They are all trying to stay positive for him.

Mark is one of dozens of people transported to area hospitals or treated at the scene. In fact, McNitt says he has bruises and so does his mom but they are fine.

Two of the trauma surgeons at OU Medical Center say they are trained for this type of incident and do regular mass casualty drills to stay prepared.

Dr. Jeffrey Bender
Dr. Jeffrey Bender, Trauma Surgeon

Dr. Jeffrey Bender says they have had the unfortunate practice over the years mostly with natural disasters to know how to handle receiving a high number of seriously injured patients. He says they have learned to adapt and the staff is exceptional.

Dr. Bender praises the other surgeons, nurses, clergy, cleaning crews and other staff for being able to handle such terrible situations for the good of the patients.

McNitt says while they are upset about all the injuries they are trying to remain positive. He is not commenting on the arrest of Adacia Chambers at this time.

He says his stepfather, Leo, is their focus and he believes he is in the best hands he could be in for medical care in the state.



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