'He still doesn’t know he’ll never walk again' - wife about her husband's car crash

2019-04-09 14:04
Suzette and Trevo Roberts. (Supplied)

Suzette and Trevo Roberts. (Supplied)

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A 41-year-old man from Middelburg in Mpumalanga was left paralysed after a car accident three weeks ago, but he still doesn’t know he’ll never walk again.

Trevor Roberts is a truck driver and had been driving his employer’s bakkie near the Duvha Power Station in Emalahleni when he had a tyre burst, causing the vehicle to veer into a tree.

"He doesn’t know that he’s paralysed yet. He’s still on a ventilator but there’s movement when he’s spoken to," says his wife Suzette.

Trevor’s fifth cervical vertebra (C5) and left arm were broken in the accident on 22 March. His lungs also collapsed on the way to hospital.

He was flown from the Life Cosmos Hospital in Emalahleni, Mpumalanga, to Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg where surgeons operated on his neck.

'Trevor’s the only breadwinner'

"The doctor says Trevor is paralysed from the waist down but he says we shouldn’t lose hope. Trevor’s the only breadwinner and the hardest part at this point is that I can’t visit him in hospital," his 39-year-old wife says.

She doesn’t have a driver’s licence and transport from Middelburg to Johannesburg is expensive.

"The last time we spoke was just before the accident. He told me he might be a little late. About 20 minutes later someone called to tell me he’d been in an accident. At first I thought it was a sick joke."

Suzette says her mother-in-law, Caroline Herbst, had travelled from Durban to visit her son shortly after the accident and stayed with him for a week.

"She touched his arm and asked if he could feel it. He nodded ‘yes’. When she touched his leg and asked if he could feel that, he shook his head ‘no’," Suzette says.

'A long road to recovery'

The couple each have two children from previous marriages. Suzette’s children are both 13 years old and Trevor’s are 11 and 18 respectively.

It’s uncertain how long Trevor will be in hospital but Suzette says he’s facing a long road to recovery. "He’s strong and I believe he’ll get through this," she says.

"Once he’s been discharged from hospital, he’ll have to stay there [in Johannesburg] for rehabilitation. I miss him so much. It’s really hard that I can’t just drive there to see him," she says and adds that she’s still studying for her learner’s licence.

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Read more on:    mbombela  |  accidents
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