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BLIND AND DEAF AFTER CAR CRASH.

Byline: By KATIE JONES South Wales Echo

A barman has been left blind and deaf after a horrific car accident. Nick Butcher, 21, needed major reconstructive surgery to put 20 metal plates in his face after the head-on collision.

Now one of the country's most famous guitarists is set to take part in a fundraising concert for him.

Nick's devastated dad Tim, who is a technician with rock group Motorhead, said: 'Nick is a real joker, full of life.

'He's still got his sense of humour but that's all he's got left. As a parent, it's awful to see. I think he's taken it better than I have.'

Nick, a former Llanishen High School pupil, was with his girlfriend when their car was involved in the road smash.

The impact crushed his head, destroyed his nose, and fractured his jaw and skull. He was in a coma at Swansea's Morriston Hospital for a month following the crash 10 weeks ago.

He eventually woke but found his senses gone, and plans to become a catering manager over.

Tim, who has been with Motorhead since 1979, has arranged for the band's guitarist Phil Campbell to join four other bands at a benefit gig tonight.

'Nick and his girlfriend were knocked unconscious,' said Tim, of Trade Street Lane, off Penarth Road, Cardiff.

'She woke and thought he was dead.

'We had been together in the morning and I had left to go to the Hammersmith Odeon in London for Motorhead's 30th anniversary concert. The police called and said they weren't sure he would make it.

'He is now blind and deaf and has no feeling in his face or head. He has brain damage and can speak but is a lot slower.'

Nick, who once worked at Cardiff's Hanover Hotel, has just started physiotherapy and is allowed home from hospital at weekends.

n Bands Psycho Squad, Set in Stone, Neckbrace and Desecration will play with Phil Campbell at the concert at Dempsey's Bar, Castle Street, Cardiff, opposite Cardiff Castle from 8pm.

Tickets cost pounds 5 and are available on the door.

For more concert details call Gavin Smart on 07966 068119.
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Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Aug 22, 2005
Words:358
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