Veteran selector from African Star Gary Williams, more popularly known as Gary Chucks, narrowly escaped death after getting a stroke on December 17 last year, while working at a street dance in Spanish Town.
The selector, who spoke to THE STAR, explained that he felt his limbs weakening, and he later collapsed around the sound system console.
“While inna di dance a play, and mi just feel mi foot give weh. I don’t know what happened after,” said Gary Chucks.
The explanation Gary Chucks received from one of the doctors treating him was that the stroke was due to tiredness and blood pressure problems.
The 47-year-old selector said that he did not have any issues with blood pressure until October 2017, after his personal possessions were stolen out of a vehicle while at a recording studio.
“Last October, my laptop, passport and visa were stolen out of a parked car while I was inside a studio. The matter was reported, and I was not worried about the items dem thief. But I’m a frequent flyer, my job depends on those things,” he said.
UNABLE TO WALK
He would again face another difficult time in his life when he got the stroke in December.
Gary Chucks spent close to a month in the Spanish Town Hospital and is still required to do physical therapy as he is still unable to walk properly.
He explained that he has missed several overseas bookings because of his illness, and he also had to reimburse the promoters. Although he is grounded, he said that he stills drops in at local street dances.
But since becoming ill, Gary Chucks said that promoters, dancehall artistes and numerous local and international sound systems and disc jockeys have reached out to show him support.
Some promoters have also shown interest in booking the selector, but because of the missing travel documents, he is unable to accept.
Despite the strains of his profession and the fact that his family worries about him a lot, he said that everyone is still supportive.
“My children who live overseas constantly check in on me and my spouse stands by me. I am also grateful to di people who reach out to me,” he said.
Small-scale events like car washes in Spanish Town have been held to raise funds in aid of the selector’s continuous treatment and required physiotherapy.
He also plans to use some of the money to carry on the process of getting back a passport and his US visa.
Gary Chucks gained popularity during the 1990s as a member of African Star Sound System that is acknowledged for spreading the name and music of reggae/dancehall recording artiste Capleton worldwide.