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El Paso victims of SXSW crash talk about terrifying night

By: Gina Benitez
EL PASO, Texas --Two El Pasoans recount the terrifying moments before they were hit in a deadly car crash in Austin Wednesday.

El Pasoan Jacqueline Longhurst and her boyfriend Luis Suarez went to Austin last week.

"We knew South by Southwest was going on but that's not really our scene. So we were really gonna go out and explore. We were going to go down to the rivers, the lakes, and the national parks," Suarez said.

The two were downtown early Wednesday during the music festival but didn't stay long.

The crowds coupled with the drunks didn't sit well with them.

"The whole time, we were saying how much we disliked downtown Austin," Suarez said.

But the two got hungry and went back downtown hours later to grab a bite to eat.

"It was so crowded and the crowd was just giving us a real bad vibe and we just wanted to eat and get out of there," Suarez said.

Then, things took a terrifying turn.

"I turned around because I heard screaming and I heard a car and when I turned, I just saw headlights and that was it," Longhurst said.

"I felt something behind me and I remember putting my hand, feeling my hand on the hood of the car and feeling Jackie get ripped from my hand," Suarez said.

Police said Rashad Owens was driving drunk and trying to get away from authorities when he slammed through a barricade and into a crowd of people.

Luis and Jacqueline were both hit.

"When I got to Jackie and she looked up and her face was already covered in blood. I just wrapped my arms around her head where the blood was coming from and tried to stop it and tried to calm her down," Suarez said.

Twenty-three people were hurt in the crash. Two died.

"There was a girl laying down next to us who, she wasn't conscious, and I could hear people saying she didn't have a pulse," Suarez said.

Longhurst is still recovering from her injuries.

"I'm in a lot of pain. It's hard to walk. I have a lot of neck pain, my arm, all my bruises, my scrapes burn, they hurt," Longhurst said.

But both have never been more grateful to be alive.

"It has to be a miracle that we're alive, I mean he was going so fast," Suarez said.

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