TRENTON, N.J. — Tracy Morgan was recovering Sunday, but was expected to remain hospitalized for several weeks after having surgery on a broken leg suffered in a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that left two others critically injured and another man dead.
The 45-year-old actor and comedian, a former Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock cast member, remained in critical condition but was "more responsive" Sunday, said Morgan's spokesman, Lewis Kay.
Kay said Morgan also sustained a broken femur, a broken nose and several broken ribs. Kay said Morgan's family is "tremendously overwhelmed and appreciative of the outpouring of love and support from his fans."
A Wal-Mart truck driver was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto. Authorities said Kevin Roper, 35, of Jonesboro, Ga., apparently failed to slow for traffic ahead early Saturday in Cranbury Township and swerved at the last minute to avoid a crash. Instead, his semitrailer smashed into the back of Morgan's chauffeured Mercedes limo bus, killing comedian James "Jimmy Mack" McNair, authorities said.
Also critically injured were Morgan's assistant, Jeffrey Millea, 36, of Shelton, Conn., and comedian Ardie Fuqua Jr., 43, of Jersey City. They remained in critical condition Sunday evening, said Zenaida Mendez, a spokeswoman for Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Brunswick. Another passenger, comic Harris Stanton, was treated and released.
Tyrone Gale, who was driving the limo bus, told ABC News that he was disoriented after the vehicle flipped over and could hear Morgan yelling for help. "I climbed up on the body of the limo bus … but I couldn't reach them."
Roper turned himself in to state police. He was released on $50,000 bail Saturday night and has been placed on administrative leave, Wal-Mart spokesman David Tovar said Sunday.