Curtis Mayfield Suffers Broken Neck; Paralyzed After Lighting Equipment Falls

Curtis Mayfield was seriously injured today (August 14, 1990), after strong winds blew lighting equipment on a stage and struck the singer.

Curtis Mayfield was performing during an outdoor door show at Brooklyn’s Wingate High School, when a lighting tower fell upon him.

Curtis Mayfield
Curtis Mayfield

Several of Curtis Mayfield’s vertebrae were l crushed in the incident, which left him a quadriplegic.

“You learn to live with it,” Curtis Mayfield said in a 1996 interview. “It’s as simple as that, or as hard as that, depending on one’s mental ability‚Ķ.You’re always learning something about your body.”

The hardest thing that Mayfield had to deal with was the loss of his guitar playing ability.

“I still mourn to this day not being able to play my guitar,” Curtis Mayfield told USA Today in 1996. “It’s like having lost a brother. It helped me as a creative person.”

Curtis Mayfield persevered through the accident, and recorded his last album New World Order, while he was lying on his back.

New World Order only took Curtis Mayfield five months to complete, thanks to his knowledge as a producer, along with advances in technology, which allowed him to record the album line by line.

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