Central Pa. high school teen attends graduation after horrific crash

Local News

BEDFORD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A high school senior got to walk across the stage and graduate with his peers following a devastating crash.

Thomas Steinbrunner, 18, of Bedford High School, was sent to UPMC Altoona after a car accident Saturday.

“I’m so grateful to be alive right now,” he said. “I’m so grateful to be standing right here.”

Steinbrunner was in a car with his friends when suddenly, the car was out of control. The car came to a halt as it hit a tree on the I-99 Cessna exit.

“It was pretty bad,” Steinbrunner said.

He was unconscious after the impact.

“I thought I fell asleep had a bad dream and woke up in the hospital,” he said. “I was like ‘oh, not dreaming.'”

Not dreaming, but in serious condition after being airlifted to a trauma unit inside the Altoona hospital.

Just 5 days later, he walked away from the hospital for the first time since the accident and then walked across the stage to graduate from Bedford High School

“I’m psyched about it.”

Despite a few bumps, bruises and lacerations, Steinbrunner, while not in class, said he learned quite possibly the most important life lesson life has to offer.

“Stay safe out there. It only takes one moment and everything’s gone. Everything. I’m grateful to be alive right now.”

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