Survivor of deadly fiery crash: 'It was terrible'

HOUSTON, Texas -- One of the survivors of the fiery deadly crash on Antoine said she cannot get the horrific images out of her mind.

"It's terrible. It's terrible to see someone lose their life like that right in front of you. It was terrible," said Tonya Polk.

Polk, 47, was on her way home from work Wednesday afternoon. She turned north on Antoine from the N. Sam Houston Parkway feeder road. Investigators say Gregory Smith, driving a silver Mercedes, first hit her black SUV and then hit a van carrying three generations of one family. It then burst into flames.

"He was going at least 80-90 miles per hour," she said. "I heard the pop from the fire and turned around and it was right there."

Piedad Soriano, her daughter Diana Escobar and Escobar's 3-month-old son Ricardo Escobar, Jr. were killed. Soriano's 11-year-old daughter was ejected and, incredibly, suffered non-life threatening injuries.

The aftermath was horrific. Good Samaritans rushed to help. It all played out in front of an injured Smith, who prosecutors say was high.

"Early indications is that it was a cocktail of illicit drugs, basically no prescriptions. Street drugs," explained Sean Teare, Chief prosecutor of the Harris County District Attorney's Office Vehicular Crimes Division.

Court records show one of the drugs was PCP. Smith was already out on bond for a PCP-related DWI and has a lengthy criminal history that includes 8 convictions. The D.A.'s Office has asked that his bond be revoked.

"He's going to have to pay for that crime he did. He's going to have to pay for that and he needs to pay for that," Polk said.

She said she prays for him and his family as well as for the family of the lives lost. She is a grandmother and mother, too.

"I'm just so sad for that family because their lives are changed forever."

Polk escaped with only bruises and is recovering at home.

"I'm just thanking God. Thanking God he spared me yesterday."

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