NewsCovering Colorado


“You don’t have words”, Pueblo church leader visits bus crash victims in hospital

Posted at 6:10 PM, Jun 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-27 21:34:40-04

PUEBLO- Jason Mutz is the youth minister at Christ the King Catholic Parish in Pueblo. He attended the Steubenville of the Rockies conference this past weekend in Denver, a conference he’s gone to a few different times.

Saturday evening, he and another youth minister made a coffee run when they started talking to a couple of chaperones from New Mexico. Come Sunday afternoon, those two chaperones experienced devastation, as their charter bus carrying six adults and nine juveniles crashed.

Two adults on the bus died from the crash.

Mutz saw the crash as he was traveling home from the conference Sunday night. Hours later, he learned who the people traveling on the bus were.

The group traveling on the bus are from the University of New Mexico Newman Aquinas Center. The group’s Facebook page identified those killed as the driver Anthony Padilla and a Seminarian traveling with the group: Jason Marshall.

Mutz spent Monday morning visiting with families of those impacted by the crash. He even saw one of the chaperones again in the hospital.

“Obviously there was a reason to meet them because here we are just trying to take care of them in their time of need,” Mutz said.

Along with other church members, Mutz brought food to impacted families Monday.

“This is one of the most difficult things to grapple with and to try to understand and that keeps going through my head and that’s what we’re doing for them- we have to pray for them and their faith,” Mutz said.

As of Monday evening, seven people remained in the hospital from the crash. One of the victims at Parkview hospital is considered to be in critical condition.

Initially, one victim was flown to Penrose St. Francis Hospital in Colorado Springs. The remaining 12 victims were sent to Parkview and Saint Mary Corwin hospitals. Most victims were released Monday.

The Diocese has set up a donation page to offer financial support for the victims with funeral, travel, and medical expense.

A Prayer Vigil is scheduled Monday evening at Christ the King in Pueblo at 7:00 p.m.