ROGERS, Minn. (KMSP) - The Rogers Drive McDonald’s was packed for several hours Tuesday evening with friends of three Rogers High School students: Ian Orina, Beckett Olson and Gretta Jensen. Each student was injured after they were struck by Chris Pech’s pick-up truck while they tried to catch the bus near Parrish Avenue North East and 78th Street.
“I’m lucky that I’m here right now, so my time should be spent helping the people who aren’t,” said Jonathan Perego, a Rogers High School sophomore.
Perego was at the Otsego bus stop when his backpack was clipped by the pick-up truck driver and has since been shaken by what he witnessed.
“For him, this is very real and we’re as a family working through those emotions of a half step, and I could’ve been in Beckett’s position,” said Perego’s mother Rebecca.
Becket Olson remains at Gillette Children’s recovering from several injuries.
Orina is recovering from a broken collarbone, facial fractures, a fractured knee and a concussion.
Jensen, meanwhile, recovers from fractured arms, a leg fracture, facial fractures, a broken nose, a concussion and a ruptured spleen that has since been removed.
“I used to be able to do everything on my own, and now even opening doors is hard,” she told FOX 9.
Both Jensen and Orina returned to Rogers High School Tuesday for a couple hours. It was their first time back since the crash.
Jensen managed to enjoy a shamrock shake during the fundraiser as Orina opted for French fries.
“They had a brush with their mortality, and that's scary,” shared Perego.
Although Orina says the most difficult part of his recovery has been finding all the people he feels he needs to thank.
“There’s so many people,” Orina insisted.
Neither of the victims remembers the crash, but all are grateful for the good that somehow comes out of so much pain.
“The love that’s been coming from everybody, it’s been great. It really has,” smiled Orina.
A “Bus Stop Accident Fund” has been established at The Bank of Elk River to benefit the three families connected to the crash. The funds will be split evenly and will go towards the growing medical expenses.
Pech faces three counts of criminal vehicular operation and is due back in court next month.