What should have been a joyful weekend trip to Las Vegas turned devastating for a Kentucky couple. A young woman is at University Medical Center, recovering from a tour bus crash that resulted in the amputation of her arm. According to police, a drunk driver is to blame.
Anthony Alston and Ashlee Swift, along with their 11-month-old baby, were on their way to Las Vegas from Louisville, Kentucky last week.
The wedding they planned to have, surrounded by family, never happened.
“It’s unreal. We worked hard for this trip,” Alston said. “How can I keep straight you know? I don’t know.”
Instead of walking his 24-year-old daughter down the aisle, Swift’s father LaPriest Storms says he had one of the toughest days of his life.
“She looked at me, and she said she wouldn’t look down at her arms or nothing. Because, she was… the way she was sitting… and she said, ‘Did they… do I got all my extremities?’” he said. “I said, ‘No.’ I said, ‘You don’t have a left arm.’ She said, ‘I don’t have a left arm?’ I said, ‘No sweetheart,’ and she just cried.”
On Saturday, March 12, the couple was in a shuttle bus headed for a helicopter ride, when Nevada Highway Patrol says Orlando Gunn drove drunk and caused a crash on I-15 near D Street.
Alston says he felt the impact, tried holding onto Ashlee, but she became trapped under the van. Other drivers had to help him free her.
For that he is thankful, but he says it is difficult to talk about.
“I just see it all, so I don’t know,” he said. “What do you say? What do you do? You know, we’re just stuck. We’re just hoping she gets better. We are thousands of miles away from home.”
With Swift in and out of surgery, the family is taking it day by day.
“You would never think that would happen to your child,” Storms said. “We’re keeping the faith.”
“I gotta’ take care of her, make sure she’s okay,” Alston said.
Ashlee Swift is one of 13 people injured in the crash, according to NHP. Gunn, a Henderson resident, faces felony DUI and other charges.
“I hope you get on your knees and ask God to forgive you. Because, this is gonna’ change my child’s life forever… forever,” Storms said.
Her family says they reached out to 8 News NOW to get the message out about the dangers of drinking and driving.
Gunn remains jailed in the Clark County Detention Center on $153,000 bail.
Alston says the baby is back with family in Kentucky. Alston and Storms plan on staying in Las Vegas until Swift can leave UMC. They say they don’t know when that will be.