Isidingo's Arno: mom's coma vigal

By admin
06 August 2011

She started writing in the diary the day after the accident. Inside are pages and pages of messages for her son, Isidingo actor Arno Marais, who’s in a coma after a car accident on 23 July.

“I write down all the messages people are sending. He can read them when he wakes up,” Corrie Viviers says.

Blue-eyed Arno (26), who is the SABC3 soapie’s mischievous Benjamin le Roux, has been in the coma since the horror crash. “He had some swelling on the brain but that has gone down now. There was bad internal bleeding and doctors operated to stop that. He has a crushed left lung and is on a respirator,” explains Corrie, who lives in Bloemfontein.

“It’s horrible seeing him lying there with all those tubes coming from his body. You feel so helpless. It’s the total opposite of what Arno is like - vibrant and on the go.”

Doctors at Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Pretoria, where Arno is in the trauma ICU, are optimistic the actor will recover. “He’s critically ill but stable,” Corrie says. “If anything gets him better it will be acting. It’s his biggest passion.”

It’s not clear what happened that Friday night, says Michelle Victor, Arno’s actress girlfriend of just over a year. She was probably the last person to speak to him on the night of the accident. It was about 11 pm and Arno had left his cottage in Centurion to get takeaways from McDonald’s.

Michelle rushed to the hospital and stayed with Arno until he was wheeled to the operating theatre. “I was picking pieces of glass off him,” she says grimly.

They don’t know how long Arno’s recovery will take or when he’ll wake up but Corrie and Michelle are at his bedside as often as possible. Several of his Isidingo castmates are regular visitors too.

They’re still waiting for Arno to breathe on his own again. Until then two of the women in his life hold his hand and tell him they love him and that people all over the country are praying for him. “I keep telling him that the show is waiting for him to get better so he can come back,” Michelle says.

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