A Camp Pendleton Marine and his wife were among five people injured in a three-vehicle crash on Oceanside Boulevard, friends told NBC 7 Tuesday.
Marine Nate Shiel and his wife Peri were rushed to Scripps La Jolla Hospital Monday evening, where Nate is still in critical condition.
Peri is conscious and seems to be improving, according to her classmates who have been at the hospital all day.
“She knows that [Nate is] not awake yet, and she knows what’s going on, and she’s just like devastated,” said friend JJ Santiago.
Oceanside police said Nate was driving a Mazda east on Oceanside Boulevard when a driver in a Chevy Impala traveling west veered into the median and hit the Mazda head-on.
A third vehicle, traveling behind the Mazda, was also struck by the Impala. That driver was taken to Palomar Medical Center for a cut to her face and chest pain.
The Impala’s driver, who police say caused the crash, has been identified as Eric Haulcy. He too is in critical condition at Scripps La Jolla.
In the meantime, friends of Peri and Nate said they're staying hopeful.
"I know she doesn't fully remember like what happened, so just waking up to knowing her husband isn't doing good is... I can only imagine how horrible that is,” said Santiago.
She said the couple is from the East Coast, so their family is on their way to San Diego County.
Peri has enrolled at Paul Mitchell Beauty School in Temecula while Nate is stationed at Camp Pendleton, according to Santiago.
“He's just awesome,” she said. “He's just a really, really good guy and he serves our country and he didn't deserve this at all."
Oceanside police are still investigating if alcohol or drugs were factors in the crash, though they say Haulcy smelled of alcohol when he was in the operating room.