Chi’en was on a float at the annual Greenwich Village Halloween Parade when a man dressed as a clown tried to climb aboard. Chi’en tried to shake the clown off, but the float’s railing collapsed and both men fell to the street. Chi’en landed face-first on the pavement, leaving him with six facial fractures — and no hope he would ever be on TV again.
“You look at yourself and know this is not the way your facial structure is supposed to be,” Chi’en, who had trouble speaking and chewing, told The New York Daily News. “I was worried about my career. You don’t see too many people on TV who have a speech impediment or a deformity.”
Chi’en will return to WPIX this week with seven metal plates in his face. There have been no arrests related to the incident, as the clown disappeared into the crowd shortly after Chi’en was pulled off the float. Chi’en said viewers sent cards and emails after the accident and one even approached him after recognizing him on the street.
“Glad to see you’re okay, and that clown didn’t ruin your life,” the viewer said.