Couple Injured in Daytona 500 Accident from Mid-Michigan - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Couple Injured in Daytona 500 Accident from Mid-Michigan


DAYTONA (WLNS) - Some NASCAR fans in Daytona for Saturday's Nationwide Race were part of an all too scary moment during the final lap. One of the cars went airborne and spun into the fence that surrounds the track, keeping the cars away from the spectators, but not the debris from the crash.

A couple from Leslie was injured in the crash.

Steve and Gaylene Johnson, both in their early 60s, are recovering at Halifax Medical Center in Daytona, with mostly cuts, scrapes and bruises.

Gaylene says her husband will most likely be released Monday and she'll probably spend a couple more days there. She said they are very lucky and still very big NASCAR fans of over ten years.

"I remember that we were standing up to see who was going to come out at the finish line. And then I heard what sounded like an explosion and I turned back towards the track to see what it was. Steve said that I pointed towards the track so he turned around to see what it was, right about that time that we both got hit by a large piece of metal," said Gaylene.

It was a 75 pound piece of metal that flew into the upper deck where the Johnson's were sitting.

"It knocked him completely over the back of his seat into the aisle behind us and it knocked me back into my seat," Gaylene recalls.

That's all she could recall from the impact.

Saturday's race winner, Tony Stewart, is Steve's favorite driver. Gaylene remembers, "he came over to the hospital [Sunday] night and visited with us. So that was very exciting for Steve."

At last check, seven of the race fans who were injured are still in the hospital.

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