Former De Smet coach, daughter survive horrific crash

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CREVE COEUR, MO (KTVI) - Greg Vitello is home from the hospital and uses a walker to get around.

It’s still hard for Vitello to shake what happened to him and his daughter on their way to watch a baseball game in Columbia Saturday afternoon.

Vitello says as he was leaving I-70, a semi-truck in front of him blew a tire.

“I hit my brakes and the brakes started to pulse and the next thing I knew, we were hit from behind by another semi,” Vitello said.

Scene video from KMIZ shows how devastating the crash could have been. The Vitellos were pinned between the two semis.

“We immediately started to say Hail Marys over and over and over again,” Vitello said.

Emergency crews worked to cut them out of their vehicle, but a feeling came over Vitello in those moments that they were going to be ok.

“I can remember in second grade I had nuns teaching me and they used to talk about guardian angels and there they were, they were right there for us,” said Vitello.

He and his daughter escaped with no broken bones, although Vitello will need a knee replacement.

Vitello spent 35 years coaching and teaching at De Smet Jesuit High School, before retiring three years ago. He says many of his former students and even other coaches have reached out to him since the crash. Some are calling their survival a miracle.

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