PRESIDIO COUNTY, Texas - District 2 City Representative-elect Alexsandra Annello and her new husband Alberto Halpern were involved in a serious crash Tuesday near Marfa, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Commissioner David Stout, who Halpern works for, told ABC-7 the couple was involved in a head-on collision. He said the 29-year-old is in critical condition, but stable condition and was taken to University Medical Center at 1 a.m.
"He's a great person. Humble. Helpful," Stout said. "There are no words that explain how amazing he has been for the County of El Paso, and for Precinct 2, and for me."
Stout said Halpern has two broken legs, a broken pelvis, a broken back, a lacerated spleen, a punctured lung, and is bleeding in his brain. He said doctors will hold off on any surgeries for at least another day, to make sure he's stabilized.
DPS said there was another passenger in the car, who Stout identified as a cousin. Stout told ABC-7 that Annello and the cousin, both who were passengers, are okay. Another passenger in the car identified as Derrick Meyer was also listed as not injured.
DPS said a Dodge Caravan was traveling the wrong way on U.S. 67 when it hit the couple's car head-on about 8 miles east of Marfa.
"He swerved to the right to try and miss the vehicle. He took the brunt of the crash," Stout said. "He's worked with me for two and a half years. He's been with me since the very beginning. He's my most trusted advisor."
DPS identified the driver of the car traveling the wrong way as Eric Keith Payne. The 42-year-old Payne, from Midland, died at the scene. He was not wearing a seatbelt.
ABC-7 previously reported Annello was not in town Saturday when she won City Council's District 2 seat because she and Halpern were getting married in Fort Davis, Texas.
"I can't even imagine what Alex (Annello) is going through right now. She's a tough person, both of them. Beto's (Halpern) is tough. He's going to fight through this. I know he is," Stout said.
ABC-7 anchor Rick Cabrera said he was told by the couple that they picked the day long before they knew when the runofff election would be held.