"Get Ready to Die," Driver Said Before Crash: Sole Survivor

Four people killed in fiery, head-on collision Monday morning

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    NEWSLETTERS

    "Get ready to die," Eduardo Rodriguez recalled his friend, Gustvo Vargas, saying in the car as he sped down Interstate 80 and made a U-turn into oncoming traffic. (Published Tuesday, Feb 7, 2012)

    The sole survivor of a fiery, head-on collision says his friend taunted his passengers and seemingly had a death wish in the moments and seconds before the crash.

    "Get ready to die," Eduardo Rodriguez recalled his friend, Gustvo Vargas, saying in the car as he sped down Interstate 80 and made a U-turn into oncoming traffic.

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    Jason Wepsiec was a young father, engaged to be married and working on a new life after a troubled past. (Published Monday, Feb 6, 2012)

    "We told him to stop. He didn't want to listen and kept going. He didn't want to stop," the 31-year-old Rodriguez said Tuesday as he was released from the hospital with arm and leg injuries.

    Vargas and the others in his car, Jorge Pina and Armando Ruiz, were killed, as was Jason Wepsiec, the young father in the other car who was on his way to visit his fiancée.

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    Four people were killed and another was critically injured early Monday when a wrong-way driver crashed into another vehicle on Interstate 80 in south suburban Hazel Crest, police said. (Published Monday, Feb 6, 2012)

    A state trooper was able to pull Rodriguez from the mangled car before it burst into flames. Rodriguez said he was unaware that his three friends and Wepsiec died in the crash until he got to the hospital.

    He said he knows how fortunate he is to be alive.

    "I feel lucky," he said.