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Nanny Recalls Saving Toddler From Drunk Driver

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Jennifer Anton, 25, (left) saved 20-month-old Tyler Jones (right) from a drunk driver on May 21, 2011, when she pushed Tyler's stroller out of the way of the driver's truck. Tyler escaped with only minor injuries, but Anton, her nanny, was more seriously hurt. (Family Photo Handout)

Jennifer Anton, 25, (left) saved 20-month-old Tyler Jones (right) from a drunk driver on May 21, 2011, when she pushed Tyler’s stroller out of the way of the driver’s truck. Tyler escaped with only minor injuries, but Anton, her nanny, was more seriously hurt. (Family Photo Handout)

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CHICAGO (CBS) – The Chicago nanny who saved a toddler’s life by pushing the girl’s stroller out of the direct path of an oncoming truck was telling her story for the first time on Tuesday.

As CBS2’s Mike Parker reports, it was a scene of horror in the Gold Coast neighborhood on May 21 when an allegedly drunk driver mowed down seven pedestrians, then crashed into a wall.

It could have been worse. A 20-month-old girl in a stroller escaped with only minor injuries, thanks to her nanny.

Jennifer Anton, 25, was still in a wheelchair on Tuesday, following 11 surgeries. Still facing an uncertain medical future, she said she remembers how she instinctively pushed the stroller carrying little Tyler Jones out of the way.

“I remember just a white flash of the truck and pushing the stroller,” Anton said. “And then it was so fast and then all of a sudden, I was face down on the sidewalk on top of another gentleman and the truck was on top of me and us.”

It was a city vehicle, driven by an allegedly drunk city worker, that brought down and injured those pedestrians at Rush and Cedar Streets.

Dwight Washington, 61, is charged with four counts of felony aggravated DUI, another two counts of misdemeanor DUI, transporting open alcohol, failure to reduce speed and negligent driving. Police said they found half a bottle of brandy in the truck.

For Anton, her recovery was made a little easier two weeks ago when Tyler Jones was brought to visit her at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

“She and I were really close so it was really good to see her,” Anton said. “She hadn’t forgotten me.”

Anton has filed a negligence lawsuit against Washington and the city of Chicago. Washington’s blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit at the time of the crash.

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