Student in Coma After Receiving Mysterious Injuries | NBC Chicago

Student in Coma After Receiving Mysterious Injuries

Family not sure if man was hit by train or beaten



    (Published Friday, Oct. 4, 2013)

    A Knox College student is fighting for his life in a Peoria hospital and nobody is sure what happened to put him there.

    Zachary Paluch, 22, is in a deep coma and his family has no idea how it happened.

    Two weeks ago, the promising artist and post-baccalaureate fellow was found by the Burlington Northern train line. Amtrak trains run right through the center of town, but nobody seems to know if he was hit by a train or attacked.

    "When they did find him at the railroad tracks, he had no shirt, no shoes on and no cell phone," said the victim's brother, Chris Paluch.

    Paluch was eventually identified by his fraternity tattoo. He suffered a broken nose, a fractured eye socket and severe traumatic brain injury.

    The family has raised close to $9,000 on an online donation page to help pay for his care.

    "We have received a lot of emails, text messages, Facebook status messages expressing love and concern and care," Chris Paluch said. "We are keeping strong in prayer and hoping he comes out. It's going to be a long recovery. We don't know exactly what extent the recovery will be, but we will be there."