October 1, 2023

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I Need A Wheelchair –Rivers Born Trumpeter Cries

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Ever encountered an astounding talent, who is physically impaired? Meet this popular trumpeter, Mr. Thankgod Kelvin Eleta, from Aggah, in Egbema, Ogba-Egbema-Ndoni Local Government Area of Rivers State. 




Skilled Eleta, who gave up his dream of becoming a medical doctor and embraced making music with the trumpet have not walked with his legs for about 25years now.




According to the Rivers son, the incident that got him impaired on his feet happened when he was three years old, following an injection he was given, according to the information he got from his late mother.



Eleta, who is an expectant father, spoke with TNN’s EDITH CHUKU in this exclusive interview where he told his story. He is also appealing to well-meaning Nigerians to get him a wheelchair, to enable him fend for his wife and family. Please hear him:


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Can we meet you?
I am Thankgod Eleta from Aggah, Egbema, ONELGA, Rivers State, the guy on wheelchair that plays trumpet.




Hmm! How does it feel attaching your condition to your identity?
What can I say? Sadly, it’s easy when you add the guy on wheelchair to my name and talent, yeah! you meet someone and say I am looking for Thankgod Eleta, and the person responds Thanks god Eleta counting the sky, and then you add, the guy that plays trumpet, then what you hear next is, the one on wheelchair (laughs). Hmm! I am trying so hard not to get used to it, not to get so comfortable with it, yes, because I do believe in Miracle, and I am hopeful that God will pass by and touch me, pull me up, out of this same day, but, even if He doesn’t, not that He can’t, if He doesn’t, it’s fine, it changes nothing. So, how does it feel, not good but it’s fine.



What really happened to you, where you born like this, how did it get to being on the wheelchair this long?
All I know is the story my mother, my late mother told me, that’s all I know.


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What did she say?
No, I wasn’t born like this, it was an injection, my late mum told me, she said when I was born I had a sickness they call convulsion, I was taken to the hospital and given injection, from there I stopped standing, that I was three, so, because according to my mum, she said I started walking at nine months, so, after the injection I couldn’t stand again, they took me, they did all they could to see if I could get on my feet again, but it was impossible.



You said you were just three years old.



Then, how long have you being on wheelchair?
For about 25years now.



I wasn’t using a wheelchair before because I wasn’t going out, they were carrying me on a bike and bicycle, it was on my 12th year that one government man helped me, saying that I will not continue to enter bike or my parents carrying me on bicycle about, so he brought a wheelchair for me.



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So, you’ve being using that very wheelchair for 16 years now, seen you turned 12?
No, no. this one I am using right now, was given to me by an honourable where I went to play trumpet, the man saw me and saw that the one I was using was old, so he had to replace it immediately there, at the program ground, so, it’s that one I’ve been using till now, and that’s even a major challenge because it’s bad, I am sincerely managing it, I need a new wheelchair.




You sound very learned and schooled.
I stopped at O’level.




Oh! How were you able to cope; in primary and secondary?
It has been my mum, my late mum, she was carrying me to school, she insisted that I must go to school, at least get little academic knowledge, so she was carrying me to school, paying my fees, going to farm, work, just to see me become someone, to make my live meaningful.




Was that achieved?
It’s a work in progress, I will be it and more. I went through a lot because of my state, I was mocked, yes, mocked, especially when I was very young, but God answered them, He shut their mouth when I discovered my God given talent. I have never been discouraged because I know that God will one day say that it’s time to favour Thankgod, sincerely God has been very faithful, very, very faithful.


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If it hadn’t happened like this, what would you have become?
I would love to be a doctor, but due to the situation, there is nothing we can do. No helping hand, I’ve been a one man squad, so, I’ve been praying to God, trying to get help from relations, communities, the state but all to no avail, I send text, I call, I visit, to an extent that I fell down from a bike a day I was going to ask for assistance from our local government chairman then, earlier 2013/14, after that I decided that I will not go to any man’s house to beg for bread anymore, so it has been the trumpet all day long. The day I get any program, I will go, I make little money, I will get food, if I didn’t see I will just manage myself for that moment, so, that’s it.



Let’s talk about your passion, your love for trumpeting, how did you find it?
Well, it came as a result of…though I wasn’t playing trumpet before, I was once a vocalist but it wasn’t really favouring me, it didn’t feel like my thing, it felt like doing something right yet not fulfilling. One day I was in a dream and I say myself holding a trumpet on my left hand and a microphone on my right hand, I was in the midst of a crowd ministering, so it was earlier 2007/2008 that I ventured into practicing how to play trumpet, it was just two months that I spent and I got the experience and 2008 till now, I’ve been a trumpeter by the grace of God.


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What special feeling do you get when you minister, or rather blow the trumpeter?
Wow, wow, wow. It feels supernatural, supreme. Trumpeter is not something you just wake up in the morning and start playing. I get inspiration from the holy spirit, I don’t play to entice men, I play to the glory of God. Whenever I play, God comes down, there is no event I minister in that someone will not come with one testimony or the other, that through my ministration this happened and that happened, so, it has been God.




What is your major challenge?
I need to replace my wheelchair, I need a new wheelchair, also, a new trumpet and possible a business to fall back on to take care of my adorable wife and family. A selfless, very beautiful lady that just decided to be with me, to help me, she is a miracle, so pretty, you just need to see her, she is God sent. My disability is not that bad, I can help myself, bath, take care of myself, wash my cloths, cook and the amazing part is that I don’t need help, as in someone that will be pushing me on the wheelchair, I push myself to wherever I want to go to and come back. Let me speak to those going through similar, less or worse situation, know that no situation last forever, bible says that the Lord will provide all our needs according to his riches in glory through Christ Jesus, so there is no storm ever in life that last forever, I remember the story of Job, he was disserted by everybody, but when God turned his captivity, remembered him, it was a miracle, so there is nothing God cannot do, what God cannot do does not exist, life is full of hope, if only we can put God first in everything we do and forget about, bible says that vain is the help of man, help comes from God, I have not seen any other God that answers prayers like this God that created man, I am a living witness, I have tested His goodness and His kindness, so, I want to encourage them to be hopeful and depend on God.


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