“I hear him yell, ‘Oh my God!’ and the next thing you know, the bright lights are right in front of me and ‘”boom!'” recalls Brenda Weiland.
Just after 9 p.m. Monday, Brenda Weiland and her husband Bryan were in their red pickup truck, headed home to Wakeman in Lorain County on State Route 60.
Just past Route 113 in Erie County’s Florence Township, investigators say a vehicle crossed the center line and slammed into them head-on.
“It could have been worse, I didn’t hurt any organs, but it’s bad. It’s going to be a long time before I’m doing anything again,” said Weiland.
Brenda is being treated for serious injuries at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland.
“He admitted right out ‘I was texting and I went left of center,'” she said.
Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth confirms the 19-year old driver, Zachary Brant, admitted he was distracted by his phone.
Brant was cited for going left of center with a distracted driving enhancement.
“I think his car kind of went up onto the front of the truck, so they didn’t get hurt,” said Weiland.
Weiland had to be extricated from the pickup.
The grandmother of eleven was then life-flighted to MetroHealth Medical Center for treatment.
“Right below my pelvis is broken. When they went to get me out, I put my hands on the bars so they could pull me out and I said “Oh my God.’ The bone was up by my pelvis and then my knee was dislocated that way and then my foot was dislocated and went the other way,” Weiland said.
Weiland says she has a huge cut on her other knee and four fractured discs in her neck.
Oct. 5, Ohio began enforcing a new distracted driving law. Weiland, a school bus driver, says she is a stickler for driving safely.
“I worry because my older grandchildren are just now starting to drive and I tell them all the time, ‘put the phone down,'” she said.
Weiland says she has a long road to recovery, with knee surgery this week, an unknown amount of rehabilitation and getting over a fear of riding in a vehicle again.
“If this just helps one person, just one person not to get hurt like this, because the pain is immense. It’s just unbelievable,” she said.
Sheriff Sigsworth says because Weiland’s injuries are so serious, the other driver could face more charges.
Weiland says doctors tell her it could be a year before she is fully recovered.
Her family has also established a GoFundMe account to help with medical bills: