Great-Grandmother Recovering From Brutal Beating by Carjacker Who Later Died in Crash

Shirleen Hernandez
Shirleen Hernandez.GoFundMe

The great-grandmother was attacked and carjacked at a gas station.

A great-grandmother was attacked and brutally beaten by a man who stole her car, only to crash it and die in the wreckage on a stretch of Texas interstate.

Shirleen Hernandez, 72, had stopped at a San Antonio Shell gas station one morning last week to purchase a Diet Coke, something she did every day. On her way inside, she was assaulted by a man who savagely beat her in a struggle for her car keys, authorities said.

Three male bystanders interceded and tried to tackle her attacker, but he got away, in her vehicle. She was left with a battered face, patterned in eggplant-colored bruises. 

"I can see that man in detail," Hernandez told KABB-TV. "I have a picture in my mind of him that just doesn't go away."

Not long after she was beaten, her car was found totaled on Interstate 35. The thief was in the driver's seat, dead, authorities said.

"There's a lot of people who would say what goes around comes around, karma," she said. "I did not think that. I got really sad because he had died. Now, granted he had hurt me, but the Lord saw fit to take him out of his misery."

As she recuperates, Hernandez says she needs a couple of things, namely a car, and to get back to work.

"I just don't want to quit working and so I've got to somehow get another car and that takes money and stuff," she says. "I've got to figure out what to do."

Her family has established a GoFundMe account to help get her back on the road. As of Tuesday, the page had garnered more than four times its goal of $5,000.

Hernandez said she wants her ordeal to encourage folks to step up when they see someone in peril.  

"I just hope that if this situation happens to anybody else, that somebody will step forward, leap forward, run forward, whatever, and help the person that it's happening to," Hernandez said.

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