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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The general manager of a popular Peruvian restaurant in Providence is fighting for his life after he was injured in a motorcycle crash over the weekend, 12 News has learned.
Marcelo Rodriguez Villarroel, who works at Los Andes, is in critical condition at Rhode Island Hospital, according to Diego Curi, one of the restaurant’s owners.
The 27-year-old was riding his motorcycle down Route 146 in North Providence early Sunday morning, according to Curi. 12 News reached out to Rhode Island State Police for more information but has not yet heard back.
Curi said Villarroel started working at Los Andes nearly a decade ago as a bus boy and was just promoted to general manager last year.
“It’s a very painful situation for everybody,” he said. “He’s one of us … part of the team and part of the Los Andes family.”
Curi said Villarroel’s mother, who lives in South America, arrived in Rhode Island Tuesday. He tells 12 News she was very emotional seeing her son, who’s on a ventilator in the ICU, for the first time.
“As soon as she said one word … he opened his eyes and moved his hands,” Curi recalled .
Villarroel is lucky to be alive. Curi said one doctor told him that, in his two decades of experience, he’s never seen someone with injuries as severe as Villaroel’s survive.
“I would say God was watching him every step of the way,” Curi said.
The doctors told Curi that if Villarroel wasn’t wearing a helmet, his injuries would’ve been much worse.
“The only reason he’s here is because of his helmet,” Curi said. “I encourage everybody who rides a motorcycle to wear a helmet. Don’t worry about [how it] looks … it will definitely save your life.”
Curi said Villaroel’s recovery is expected to take approximately six months. In the meantime, Los Andes has set up a GoFundMe page to help cover Villarroel’s accumulating medical expenses.
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