The two men didn't hear the truck coming. They didn't see the white Ford turn the corner and head toward them onto Winding Way. Bill Collins didn't even have time to look up.
"It just mowed us down," he said.
It has been a month since Collins and his friend, Paul Pellandini, were struck by the hit-and-run driver as they were talking in front of Pellandini's Arden Arcade home on March 22.
Pellandini, 54, died at the scene. Collins, who woke up as paramedics were loading him onto an ambulance, was severely injured.
Last week, the 57-year-old Collins was released from the hospital, though he is still recovering. He has extensive injuries, including a crushed pelvis, a cracked spine, five broken ribs and a rod in his femur. He does not remember the impact.
"I'm not sure I'd want to anyway," he said.
Officers found the truck that struck the men a few days later, but the vehicle has been sold several times and law enforcement officials have not been able to determine who was driving, according to the California Highway Patrol.
"We haven't been able to put anybody behind the wheel yet," said Officer Liz Dutton, a CHP spokeswoman. No witnesses have come forward and the investigation is ongoing, she said.
Carol Pellandini found her husband and Collins moments after the accident. "I knew when I saw him that (Paul) was gone," she said quietly.
Pellandini cannot understand how someone could just drive away after hitting two people. "I can't comprehend that," she said. The couple had been married almost 20 years.
Pellandini has visited Collins and worries that he blames himself. "He thinks it wouldn't have happened if he hadn't visited that day," she said. "But it's not his fault at all."
The repercussions of that day have affected Collins not only physically and emotionally they have hit him financially. Collins lost his job two years ago and is unemployed. He doesn't have health insurance, and now he estimates he is going to have thousands of dollars in medical bills.
"How am I going to pay them?" he asked.
Collins also worries how he will make it to his follow-up doctor appointments. He spends most of his time in bed, and he cannot sit up in his wheelchair for more than five minutes because it is too painful.
He needs to rent an ambulance to transport him to his appointments. He said he will have to scramble to come up with the $168 fee.
"I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to do it," he said.
He thinks a lot about the accident.
Collins often stopped by Pellandini's house to visit. The two men had known each other for 20 years and were good friends. That day Collins was leaving Pellandini's home about 5:40 p.m. His car was parked on the street and Collins walked around to open his car door. Pellandini, talking and laughing, followed.
"I can't believe he's gone," Collins said.
His wife, Lillian, works during the day and takes care of him after work. His sister, Marilyn Wright of Folsom, is there for him during the day.
"He's in a lot of pain. It's unbelievable that this can happen to someone and everything about their life can change in a moment," Wright said.
Collins said he is too numb to be angry at the driver. "Paul's dead and my life is ruined," he said. "I want the driver to know that."
Pellandini said she wants to ask the driver how it happened. "I'm a firm believer that God doesn't allow things to happen without a reason," she said. "It's hard for me to handle, but I don't question God on that."