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State Fair worker still recovering after being crushed by ride

Posted November 26, 2013

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— News of a horrifying accident at the North Carolina State Fair last month that seriously injured five people has overshadowed another accident that happened four days later when Anesto Newell was crushed by part of a ride he was disassembling.

"I heard a loud snap, and then, it was like the ride was just coming at me before I could even turn and get out of the way," Newell said Tuesday at WakeMed in Raleigh, where he's been recovering since the early hours of Oct. 28 when the seating compartment of the ride fell on top of him.

"It clipped me, and it sent me flying," he added. "I probably got sent flying anywhere from 25 to 50 feet in the air and hit straight pavement."

The next thing Newell remembers was waking up at the hospital unsure about wether he would survive.

"I didn't know what was going on," he said. "I was praying for God to watch over my son, for God to watch over my mother, for God to watch over my fiancée and just for God to make sure they didn't have to take my legs."

Newell's life had been changed forever.

With a crushed pelvis and crushed legs and screws and metal plates throughout his body, the 33-year-old aspiring singer – who had taken the State Fair job for extra income – says he is unsure if he'll ever be able to walk again.

Nearly a month later, he says, physical therapy is difficult and rehabilitation is slow. He recently just started regaining feeling in some of his toes.

"I'm in pain 24/7. It's not like I can stop this pain," Newell said. "It's not like that I can do something about it and just take some medicine and say, 'OK, they pain is gone.' This is for life."

Still, he says, he's thankful to be alive and credits that to his younger brother, who with the help of others, freed him.

"I love him for that, and he saved my life," Newell said. "He really did."

The accident has also taken a toll on his family. At the time, his mother, Jean Quartey, had been in the hospital recovering from her own medical problems.

When she found out about her son, she had to take some medication to calm her before doctors would let her see him.

"It looked like he was on his death bed," Quartey said. "There was just so much damage to him."

As for what the future holds, neither Newell nor his mother know, but they hope that, even if he has to use a wheelchair now and then, he will be able to walk.

"This is a life-changing situation for him, and it's in God's hands," Quartey said. "God's got it."

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  • soapbox Nov 27, 2013

    Wow! Just a reminder that life can change dramatically in the space of a heartbeat.

    Best to you and your family, Mr. Newell. You are a brave soul. Praying for you, for blessings and miracles. Hang in there!

  • cecil822 Nov 27, 2013

    Wow. I don't have any real problems today. Prayers up for your recovery brother.

  • 1775 Nov 27, 2013

    Prayers lifted

  • DavidJonathan Nov 27, 2013

    Love and prayers being sent your way.

  • heard-it-all-before Nov 27, 2013

    "Must be heart-warming for doctors to always hear how thankful their patients are for all the help and care that God has given them."

    yeah i doubt they're offended by it, as you're insinuating. many of them probably feel they have a gift from God just as their patients do.

  • dontstopnow Nov 27, 2013

    Sad, very sad indeed. Hope he will walk and be able to care for his family again.

  • 68_dodge_polara Nov 27, 2013

    Please help pray for this young man.

  • Whosays Nov 27, 2013

    God bless him. I feel so sorry for him, but I know God will make him walk again, I just know it! I feel like he will heal completely. Love to you and your family, keep your chin up as long as you believe God can he will heal you completely.

  • UMadBro Nov 27, 2013

    Must be heart-warming for doctors to always hear how thankful their patients are for all the help and care that God has given them.