From NBC5 in Dallas:

A veteran who just returned from Iraq said his Army instincts kicked in when he pulled a man he had never met away from a brutal attack on South Padre Island during spring break.

Twenty-one-year-old Derek Madrigal, a Brookhaven College student from Dallas, is fighting for his life after he was beaten and stabbed in an attack that was caught on a cellphone video.

In an exclusive interview with NBC 5, Fabian Ortega said he knew Madrigal was in trouble when the crowd swarmed him.

“We were having a good time, and then we see this bloody figure making his way toward our section of the beach, and he was followed by this mob of people,” he said.