Metallica appeared and played a concert last week at the X-Games in Texas, and though the show was fantastic, at least one fan didn’t have a very good time.
Metallica fan Greg McCarthy is a veteran of Desert Storm who lost his legs while serving his country. When he arrived at the Metallica show, McCarthy says that ushers led him to an area that wasn’t exactly wheelchair-friendly. During the show, Metallica drummer, Lars Ulrich, threw out a drumstick to fans that landed in the area of McCarthy. McCarthy says that he was immediately swamped by rabid Metallica fans attempting to get the stick, and in the process, they trashed his wheelchair, breaking its wheels.
Now, Greg McCarthy is looking for some compensation, and he just might get it. The venue that held the Metallica X-Games concert, just outside of Austin Texas is the Circuit of the Americas, or COTA. A 3.427 mile race track in Travis County, the COTA is the site of the annual Formula One United States Grand Prix. It was COTA that McCarthy approached about getting a new chair after his was destroyed at the Metallica concert.
Tom Webb, the Senior Director of Motorsport Marketing and Communications at Circuit of the Americas, drove out to visit with Greg McCarthy last Thursday to find out exactly what happened at the Metallica X-Games concert. Webb also brought along an EMS employee that had helped McCarthy get back to his car after the Metallica show.
After the meeting, Tom Webb said that he would be reviewing everything that Mr. McCarthy told him about the incident to see if it could be verified. If so, he believes that COTA will be getting a new set of wheels. However, Webb said he also has something else in mind for the man whose wheelchair got crushed at the Metallica concert.
“We are very keen that Mr. McCarthy comes back to Circuit of the Americas. I hope he doesn’t mind me saying that one of the things we’ve just been discussing this afternoon is maybe having him come out for our next 2 major events, taking a look at the ADA facilities that we will have in place for that and giving us his insights.”
The idea that McCarthy could be used by COTA to find ways from preventing what happened to him from happening to someone else is certainly innovative.
As for McCarthy, he just wants to see another Metallica show.
“[A stranger] just friended me on Facebook and he’s created a FundRazr account in order to try to buy me a new chair and get me up there for [a Metallica] concert in Ohio.”
[Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images]