‘We give God all the praise’: Beaufort Co. emergency services director recovers after waking up from coma

An Eastern Carolina emergency services director that was injured in a motorcycle crash in June has woken up from his coma.
Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 2:21 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 23, 2022 at 3:21 PM EDT
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ATLANTA, GA (WITN) - An Eastern Carolina emergency services director that was injured in a motorcycle crash in June woke up from a coma last week.

Melody Hedgepeth, the wife of Carnie Hedgepeth, says her husband emerged from his coma at a rehabilitation center in Atlanta, Georgia.

WITN spoke with Melody Hedgepeth, who says her husband woke up from the coma around the 42nd or 43rd day.

Carnie Hedgepeth has been at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta since July 28th, when he was airlifted there after a first responder escort and prayer observance on the tarmac at Pitt-Greenville Airport. WITN is told the center specializes in coma care and neurological rehabilitation and is one of the top ten rehab hospitals in the country.

Melody Hedgepeth says the moment her husband woke up from the coma was one filled with joy.

“There were tears shed... so thankful because we weren’t sure if he was going to come out of it. To see him first open his eyes back in Greenville and then to come here and within three days, he was talking, and even though it didn’t make a lot of sense, he knew who I was, he knew who his kids were,” Melody Hedgepeth said.

Melody Hedgepeth also shared that her husband has moved down to a smaller wheelchair and is now able to use his right arm and his right leg, as well as his left leg more than before.

However, she doesn’t know whether he’ll be able to return to his job.

“Everything that we’re getting is going to be enough for us right now. The doctors say every brain injury is different,” Melody Hedgepeth said.

Carnie Hedgepeth was injured on June 20 when troopers say a car pulled out in front of him from a side road. Joshua Joyner was charged by troopers with failure to yield and driving with a revoked license.

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