BEAUMONT, Texas — A family lucky to be alive is now back home recovering.
Miguel Lerma and his family were driving back to Beaumont in the morning hours of December 1 after visiting family for Thanksgiving.
When they reached the town Allende, Mexico, roughly 40 miles from the Texas border, tragedy struck.
"We didn't have time to react or anything," Lerma said. "It happened within half of a second and by the time we realize, we were already flipping upside down."
He said a car traveling around 70 miles per hour veered into their lane and hit them head on.
"The first thing that came to mind is we're about to die," he said.
He can still remember his 12-year-old daughter, Mia, yelling through it all.
"I could hear her screaming in the back as we were flipping," Lerma said. "It was a sign of relief because I knew she was alive."
Lerma tells 12News that the driver of the car was drunk and the impact killed all four people in it.
Fortunately for the Lerma family, all three including their dog, survived the crash.
Unfortunately, Lerma's wife and daughter were in bad shape.
Both had to be airlifted to University Hospital in San Antonio for surgery.
"It's hard and stressful, seeing them in the condition they were," Lerma said. "Knowing I just came out of it with bumps and bruises on my head, scratches and what not. Nothing compared to what they suffer."
A GoFundMe has been set up to assist the family.
His wife Janett, ended up with a fractured spine, both feet broken, a fractured shin and ribs.
She underwent an 11-hour surgery when she got to the hospital and spent most of her time in the ICU.
Mia, Lerma's daughter, fractured her femur, wrist and also dislocated her hip.
For the next 35 days, Lerma's wife and daughter fought through recovery.
Their strength eventually earned them the opportunity to go home last weekend.
"Leaving the hospital, it felt good," Lerma said.
Yet, even back in a familiar place, reality still poses challenges.
"We're still a long ways from recovery," Lerma said.
Lerma has had to temporarily close his business, Silsvia's Tacos, in Groves.
His wife remains mostly confined to her bed and in lots of pain.
Mia still has to use a walker as she continues to learn how to walk again and will miss weeks of school.
Lerma tells 12News it's not the holiday season they wished for, but they're overwhelmed by the community's support through this experience.
"It's a hard situation we're in but with all the support and prayers, a lot of people are asking 'what do you need?' Right now, we need prayers for recovery," Lerma said.