A 'miracle' son survived crash – father
Sun, 15 Jul 2012 5:24p.m.
The father of a young Chilean man who survived a horrific car crash near National Park in which four men died says it's a miracle his son is alive.
Agustin Donofrio, 25, German Caceres, 35, Nicolas Ursic, 27, and Luciano Pucheta, 19, who all worked at the Whakapapa Ski Field, were killed when the car they were in ploughed head-on into and under a truck near the central North Island town.
Their Chilean colleague Benjamin Blake, 25, is in a stable condition at Waikato Hospital after undergoing surgery yesterday.
His father, Dr Eric Blake, arrived yesterday from Chile and is at his son's bedside while family and friends hold a mass at a Santiago church today (NZT) to pray for his recovery.
"That Benjamin survived is a miracle," Dr Blake said in a statement released by the hospital.
Dr Blake said his wife and their four sons offered their prayers and condolences to the families of those who had died in the accident.
He also thanked emergency service staff who had helped his son at the scene of the crash and hospital personnel.
Benjamin broke his left leg, two bones in his left forearm and two ribs in the crash.
It was earlier reported that staff at the Whakapapa Ski Field were planning to hold a memorial service on Sunday, but this did not go ahead and may be held at a later stage.
The men were returning from playing indoor soccer in Ohakune to their backpackers accommodation at National Park when the accident happened.
They had pulled out to overtake a truck just north of the Makatote Viaduct and collided with a truck coming the other way.
The truck driver was uninjured.
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