Woman whose apartment was destroyed in SUV crash speaks out

By Andy Jenks - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - For the first time, the woman whose apartment was destroyed by a car crash is talking about what it's like to have her life turned upside down. And there's new video of crews trying to rescue a very expensive piece of electronics.

Crews are making progress cleaning the sidewalk, and securing both floors of the building. Usually, the work attracts a big crowd. But today just about the only person watching was the woman, with the most to lose.

There's not a lot you can do when your apartment is missing two walls, and part of the ceiling. So Kristin Unterseher is content to just look and listen.

"I hear people walking by, saying, 'Oh, that sucks for whoever lives there.' Yep," Unterseher said today, during her first television interview.

Kristin was at work Saturday when a car plowed into the Marshall Street Cafe, causing a partial collapse of her apartment which sits above it. The scene attracted daily crowds.

"I don't think I've ever cried in front of that many people before. I couldn't really contain my emotions," Unterseher said.

For now, Kristin's living out of a nearby house. But everything she owns...is up there.

"My house is empty right now. So, I would love a bed and some clothes," she said.

Onlookers never saw her closet. They did get a good look at what's in her living room.

"Everybody talked about the TV, they wanted the TV," said Aaron Whitmore of Blake Contracting.

For days, the flat panel TV was tilted precariously off the second floor. Only the fallen ceiling on top of it appeared to keep gravity at bay. When Whitmore went in to get it - truth be told - we zoomed out, thinking it was about to take a two-story fall.

We were wrong. The television wobbled back into its rightful place, and later was handed over to Kristin, almost like a trophy.

"Well I'm glad the rightful owner was here. She deserves the TV after all the trouble she's been through," Whitmore said.

A consolation prize, perhaps. But with her dog, and father by her side...Kristin says what really matters is already on the ground.

"I've realized I can make it by without all of my belongings. But, I guess, just making me grateful for what I do have," she said.

Late Wednesday, workers began removing Kristin's belongings, and putting them into a moving truck. The goal is to get the building boarded up by Friday. For now, a two-block area surrounding the intersection of N. Adams and W. Marshall Streets remains closed.

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