Father paralyzed in head-on collision dies after fighting for a year :: WRAL.com
Durham, North Carolina – A man from Wake Forest who was paralyzed from neck to toe in a head-on collision in County Durham has died after struggling to recover for more than a year.
A father and former North Carolina Central University football player. Marcel Burns fought every day to recover and return home to his wife and children. The family documented his progress on their YouTube channel, where they shared what his life was like as a quadriplegic and amputee, and highlighted emotional moments like the news that he was finally coming home.
Burns was heading for the gym on the morning of August 31, 2020 when a driver hit him head-on while driving on Wake Forest Highway.
After the accident, Burns was hospitalized at Duke University Hospital for eight months. After being transferred to an out-of-state drug rehabilitation center and finally released four months ago, his family believed things were improving.
âHe was a believer. He knew God was with him through everything, âsaid his wife Lorrany Burns,
Miraculously, he survived the crash.
âHe had about 37 surgeries, so his body suffered a lot,â Lorrany said. “And every day I was living under pressure. I should be on standby with my phone.”
She and her husband were in love with high school. His friends and relatives have described him as a great person, a family man and a light to everyone he meets.
This radiant positivity was highlighted on the couple’s YouTube channel where they documented every step of their fight.
âHe was very positive. It’s the number one thing he’s always been. He didn’t sound negative at all. He didn’t see any problem with anything. He always had a solution, âLorrany said.
Although Burns tried to stay motivated and strong, his wife says he became depressed about his new reality.
âOn Tuesday night he said, ‘I’m really tired of living like this. I can’t hold my children. I can’t be there for you. He was very present,'” Lorrany said.
“It really hurt her not to be able to be there like before,” she said.
On Friday, December 3, his body gave way as a result of injuries from the accident.
Her little boy said to her, âMom, don’t cry. Dad is with God and he’s fine.
This tragedy triggered nationwide support on GoFundMe, and the family hope everyone receives this message:
“Life is too short. Tell who you love you love them. Hold them tight. Take pictures take videos. Kiss your loved ones and cherish the time you spend with them. Honestly, I have the ‘feel like this is what God allowed me to do,’ Lorrany said.
The funeral will be on Sunday at Marcel’s former high school in Wilmington.
The driver who struck Burns pleaded guilty to serious vehicle injury last month.