MIAMI (CBS4) – A 33-year-old Miramar man, former Miami Gardens police officer, was left in critical condition after a crash on the Florida Turnpike over the weekend that took the life of his 28-year-old fiancé.
Dwayne Bryce said that his nephew, Jeffrey Bryce Jr., is in critical but stable condition at Jackson Memorial Hospital and suffered from 3rd degree burns on his back, neck, ear and part of his face.
“He was with Miami Gardens Police for seven years and he just left the department a few months ago,” said Bryce. “Now he is incubated inside the burn unit of the hospital and will be heavily medicated for the next few days.”
The accident happened in the westbound lanes just west of University Drive in Miramar on Saturday around 2:45 a.m.
Bryce Jr., of Miramar, had stopped his 2004 Hyundai in the left lane. It was rear ended by a Nissan driven by 26-year old Evan Soto, according to the FHP.
FHP Sergeant, Mark Wysocky, said the impact was so severe, it caused the Hyundai to catch on fire and explode. Bryce, who was critically injured, was pulled from the car by Soto and another driver. The passenger, Nathalie Vasquez, Bryce Jr.’s fiancé from Miramar, died on scene.
“It’s not known why the vehicle had stopped on the highway,” said Wysocky Soto who was reportedly treated at the hospital for minor injuries and released.
Doctors will be watching Bryce Jr. closely because of how susceptible he is to infections in this stage, according to Bryce.
“My nephew is conscious with his eyes open, he does not know his fiancé has passed away,” said his uncle.
Bryce Jr.’s mother said that neither she nor her son wanted to say anything right now.
Meanwhile, Bryce’s loved ones were at his side inside the burn unit at the Ryder Trauma Center of Jackson Memorial Hospital on Monday.