Chicago Fire player rescued from hit-and-run crash

SUMMIT, Ill. -- A Chicago Fire soccer player was injured Thursday morning when the car he was driving was hit by a U-Haul truck.

Johan Kappelhof is a star defender for the Chicago Fire. He is originally from Amsterdam and was on his way to soccer practice around 11 a.m. when the crash happened.

The U-Haul truck hit Kappelhoff’s car head on near 59th Street and Harlem Avenue. The impact was so hard the vehicle flipped completely over.

Terrell Allen works at Thornton’s and saw the crash.

“All I saw was the airbags,” he said. “He was all bloody.  I pulled him out and set him on the ground.”

The U-Haul driver did not stop. Witnesses said the driver ran off and the man in the passenger side of the U-Haul got into the driver’s seat and sped off. Police caught up to the truck on I-55 and arrested three people.

However, the shock of the accident is still fresh for the team.

Many Chicago Fire players actually passed the accident on their way to practice but had no idea one of their teammates was on the side of the road.

“It was actually very, very dramatic this morning for us,” Fire coach Velijko Paunovic said. “But the good thing is that he’s healthy, he’s in hospital.  I could speak with him.”

Kappelhoff was released from the hospital Thursday afternoon.