Tracy Morgan is in intensive care Saturday after the limousine bus he was riding in was involved in a multi-vehicle accident on the New Jersey Turnpike.
The vehicle carrying the former Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock cast member, 45, and six others was involved in a six-vehicle accident on the turnpike near Cranbury Township at about 1 a.m. Saturday, Sgt. First Class Greg Williams told the Associated Press.
Williams said one person died in the crash that occurred in the northbound lanes of the turnpike near mile marker 71.5. He has been identified as James McNair, and was in the same vehicle as Morgan. McNair was a comedian and friend of Morgan’s who performed under the name Uncle Jimmy Mack.
Comedians Harris Stanton and Ardie Fuqua, who were in the limousine bus, were also hospitalized with injuries. (Fuqua had posted a photo from inside the tour bus shortly before the accident.) Morgan’s assistant, Jeff Millea, was also on the bus, as were two drivers.
Morgan "Not in Good Shape"
“Tracy remains in critical condition at Robert Wood Johnson Hospital,” Morgan’s rep confirmed to PEOPLE in a statement. “He sustained these injuries in an accident that occurred early this morning as one of several passengers in a chauffeured SUV returning from a tour date in Delaware.”
“His family is now with him and he is receiving excellent care. We don’t anticipate much of a change in his condition today but will provide a further update once more information becomes available.”
“He’s not in good shape,” Morgan’s ex-wife Sabina Morgan told the New York Daily News. “I’m traumatized. I’m so upset. I can’t believe it. It’s like I’m in a nightmare.”
She said that the comedian had a broken leg and was unconscious, but doctors anticipated he would recover.
The mother of Morgan’s fiancée, Megan Wollover, told the Daily News that she “was devastated” when she learned of her future son-in-law’s accident, but was relieved to learn that her daughter and the couple’s 11-month-old baby, Maven, weren’t traveling on the bus with him. “I just hope he gets through this,” Christine Wollover added.
Morgan and his assistant, Millea, had been transported to hospital in a helicopter, Sgt. Williams said. Stanton was released from hospital on Saturday, while Fuqua and Millea remained in critical condition, a hospital spokesperson confirms to PEOPLE.
Truck Driver Charged
Williams says two tractor-trailers, a sports utility vehicle and two cars, along with the actor and comedian’s limo bus, were involved in the accident. Police say the accident was caused by a Walmart truck driver who didn’t see traffic slowing in front of his 18-wheeler until it was too late.
The driver, Kevin Roper of Jonesboro, Georgia, has been charged with one count of death by auto and four counts of assault by auto.
Roper, accompanied by his attorney, turned himself in to state police. He was released on $50,000 bail Saturday night, Walmart spokesman David Tovar said.
Walmart President Bill Simon said in a statement that the company “will take full responsibility” if authorities determine its truck caused the accident.
“This is a tragedy and we are profoundly sorry that one of our trucks was involved … Safety is our absolute highest priority, but that is no comfort whatsoever to the families and friends who are suffering today. We offer them our deepest condolences. We can’t change what happened, but we will do what’s right for the family of the victim and the survivors in the days and weeks ahead.”
The New Jersey Turnpike was closed for more than five hours after the crash and was reopened at about 6:30 a.m.
• With reporting by MICHELLE TAN, STEVE HELLING, SAMANTHA MILLER and DIANE HERBST and additional writing by K.C. BLUMM