Here are the pictures. Click for full size (they're big, so they take a while to load)

The Crash

I should give a little back-story to explain. I had purchased a new car for myself after graduating from college. The car you see in the pictures here was a 1986 Honda Civic "Wagovan." It was easily the ugliest car I've ever seen, let alone driven. By the time I took ownership of this vehicle, it was experiencing reliability problems. Two months after buying my new car, I had yet to find a buyer. This was mostly due to the fact that my brother asked to use it for a few weeks before going back to school for the year (where he didn't need a car).

My brother was working long hours during the day doing tech grunt work. It was a lot of physical labor (moving computers, installing and setting up hardware, etc) and not the most exciting job. Meanwhile, he was working one or two days part-time at a local movie theatre where he had previously worked (the benefit being free movies as long as he was on the payroll). Finally, he took a freelance gig as a cameraman shooting B-roll for a fair. That's where things got messy. With so little free time, David was getting very little sleep and working long hours. The fair was just over a week of work.

On Friday night (the fair ran Saturday to Sunday, I believe) he didn't show up on time. Usually, David is very reliable and was arriving early. He checked in as soon as he got there. They called his boss (he was contracting for a project manager I knew) who called me. I had just arrived home Friday night, drank a beer and was starting a long night of relaxing and video games. I called David's cell phone.

A woman answered and told me to come to the hospital.

David had apparently fallen asleep at the wheel, crossed the center line, and hit a semi. He sideswiped the cab and hit the trailer head-on.

David was taken to the local hospital by ambulance. They had to cut him out of the car. When you see the pictures below, think about a human being (not a small kid, either) fitting in the driver's seat there. The driver of the truck was not injured. The accident scene was cleaned up and the car was towed away.

When I arrived at the hospital, they let me see David. He was in the emergency room and had some terrible cuts and bruises. He was conscious at that time (and, in true Grundy fashion, joking around with the nurses and me). They shaved part of his head to give him stitches on his scalp. He had stitches in his knee and elbow. My Dad (who had met me at the hospital) and I waiting until 2:30am while the doctor stiched my brother up, removed glass fragments, and cleaned the wounds.

The camera, valued over $10,000, was in the vehicle at the time. It was in a padded case and sustained minor damage. A repair tech was able to fix it in under 15 minutes at little or no charge (I never heard those details) to the camera's owners. (It was also insured, in case it had been substantial.) The project manager visited the car lot where the vehicle had been towed and retrieved the camera that evening. According to many folks, anything of value will not be there in the morning.

David left the hospital around 2:30am on crutches. I took him to my mother's apartment to stay the night. He remembers very little of that evening, but has no permanent injuries from it. A small scar on his elbow and on his knee are the only physical reminders.

A couple of days later, we took a trip out to the towing place to see the car and get anything we could from it. I took the title to them and they charged us a couple hundred dollars for the accident cleanup. I took photos of the car at the lot.