Tragedy puts career on pause for sing spinner

Tragedy puts career on pause for sing spinner


BENSON, N.C. — On a very hot day, Spectrum News 1 showed you what it’s like to work outside in scorching hot temperatures through the eyes of longtime sign spinner, Matt Collins. 

 

What You Need to Know

Matt Collins, a long-time sign spinner, was hit by car on a busy Clayton intersection, just a few weeks after Spectrum News 1 first talked to him on a hot June day 

The right side of his body is almost completely immobile 

Collins isn’t ruling out a return to doing what he loves 

 

Sign spinners advertise for businesses and direct customers, and they often infuse some fun into it with dance moves or costumes. Spectrum News 1 first met Collins in June and gave viewers a glimpse into a day in his life. 

Collins was hit by a car at the same intersection just three weeks after the Spectrum News 1 story aired. He was working at a busy Clayton intersection at the time, and now, his career is on hold while he recovers.

When we first met Collins on June 30, he said he was in the best shape he had been in for decades. Drivers couldn’t miss the sign spinner of 25 years with his long hair, friendly wave, and those attention-gaining spins.

“I’m in it for the attention. I love the attention,” Collins said.

Today, Collins is unrecognizable. His long hair is gone. His right ankle is shattered in multiple spots, and his right shoulder had to be replaced.

“The vehicle hit me, I fell to the ground. I don’t remember anything else,” Collins said. “The report says one vehicle hit another vehicle, which hit me.”

His wife helps him with daily physical therapy.

Fortunately, Collins’ left leg can still move, but his entire right side is mostly immobile.

He squeezes a ball for dexterity and can move his right arm with some help.

Collins, an army veteran, says he has some insurance, but it’s not nearly enough.

Even though his injuries are significant, and he often has nightmares about the accident, he’s not ruling out a return to doing what he loves.

“I’m gonna have to take it day-by-day, and we’ll have to see what happens in the spring or summer or next year, but it’s gonna be difficult,” Collins said.

Collins said he does have an attorney, but declined to discuss more details of the incident. 

If you’d like to help Collins, you can donate here.



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