Surviving Cadet of Fiery Crash Out of Surgery

By: Stephanie Ando Email
By: Stephanie Ando Email

The Texas A&M Cadet, and lone survivor of a fiery head-on crash that killed three people Sunday, underwent surgery at a Houston hospital Monday, according to Corps leaders.

Harris County Sheriff's Deputies say the accident happened around 3:30 AM Sunday on Highway 290 near the Waller/Harris County Line.

Investigators say Francisco Campos, Amy Pacheco and Miguel Hernandez, were on their way back to College Station from Houston when they were hit head on by a Mustang going the wrong way.

The Ford Explorer caught fire, killing Pacheco and Hernandez.

The driver of the Mustang, 21-year old Katie Thomas, was also killed in the crash. Deputies say beer bottles were found in her car.

“Anytime you lose young people like that, it’s tragic. I'm a father and I can't imagine what those families are going through right now,” said Brig. Gen. Joe Ramirez, Commandant of the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets.

Campos suffered burns and broken bones and was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston. Corps leaders say he will probably spend at least two weeks recovering in the hospital.

“It looked pretty bad. The fact that he is alive is a miracle,” said Brig. Gen. Ramirez.

The three cadets had judged a high school drill competition with other members of the corps in Houston Saturday.

“For a second it was a moment of disbelief,” said B-1 Company Commander Alexander Cotter.

“I lost all my bearing for a minute, because I had been with those cadets not 24 hours earlier,” said Corps Commander Marquis Alexander.

Amy Pacheco was 18-years-old. She went to Chavez High School in Houston.

“I remember her well, she was a fine young lady,” said Brig. Gen. Ramirez. “Her mother said the Corps was her life.”

Miguel Hernandez was also only 18 years old.

“Hernandez, he tried his hardest at everything he did,” said Cotter.

Corps leaders say the loss has been hard on everyone, especially those who lived and worked in the same unit with Pacheco and Hernandez in Company B-1.

“For what happened, we're doing the best we can...considering the circumstances,” said Cotter.

Funeral arrangements have not been finalized yet for either of the cadets.

Cadets will honor Amy Pacheco and Miguel Hernandez during a special Echo Taps ceremony Monday at 10:30 PM.

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