State Fair worker still recovering after being crushed by ride
Posted November 26, 2013
Raleigh, N.C. — 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."