Morgan Freeman Seriously Injured in Car Crash

August 5, 2008 Updated: October 1, 2015
Morgan Freeman at the after party for the world premiere of 'The Dark Knight' at the Mandarin Oriental ballroom on July 14, 2008 in New York City. Freeman was seriously injured in a car accident on Monday August 4. (Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)
Morgan Freeman at the after party for the world premiere of 'The Dark Knight' at the Mandarin Oriental ballroom on July 14, 2008 in New York City. Freeman was seriously injured in a car accident on Monday August 4. (Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)

NEW YORK—Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman was driving down a dark highway in the Mississippi Delta when his car left the road and flipped several times late Sunday night.

The 71-year-old was airlifted from the scene and taken 90 miles north to the Regional Medical Center in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was hospitalized in serious condition.

According to a statement from Freeman’s publicist, Donna Lee, the actor has “a broken arm, broken elbow and minor shoulder damage, but is in good spirits.”

Lee also stated that Freeman was scheduled to have “a little bit of surgery this afternoon or tomorrow to help correct the damage.”

The actor stated that he looks forward to a full recovery. Freeman, who won an Academy Award for his performance in Million Dollar Baby, recently played the role of Lucius Fox in The Dark Knight.

Freeman has also been featured in Driving Miss Daisy and Glory.

Freeman and a companion were traveling along the two-lane highway that cuts through the rural Mississippi Delta when their vehicle ran off the road and flipped several times before it landed upright in a ditch near the highway.

He was driving a 1997 Nissan Maxima that belonged to friend and Memphis native Demaris Meyer.

Mississippi Highway Patrol spokesperson Sgt. Ben Williams said that rescuers at the scene used the Jaws of Life to safely extract the actor.

“There’s no indication that either drugs or alcohol were involved,” Williams said, but confirmed that both parties were wearing seat belts.

Freeman’s current facility is commonly known as “The Med.”

It is an acute-care teaching facility that offers care to patients within a 150-mile radius of Memphis.

Fellow Mississippian and country singer Steve Azar stated on Monday that he was “definitely concerned.” Azar’s 2002 hit, “Waitin’ on Joe,” featured Freeman in the music video.

“He’s been the best ambassador our state has ever had,” said Azar. The two have worked charity events together in the past.

Freeman was born in Memphis, Tennessee, but spent much of his childhood in the Mississippi Delta.

He currently co-owns the Ground Zero Blues Club in Clarksdale.

“He could live anywhere in the world and he came back home,” said Azar. “It shows a lot about him as a person and how grounded he is.”