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Tracy Morgan showing signs of improvement after New Jersey highway crash that killed friend

FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2012 file photo, comedian Tracy Morgan performs at

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FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2012 file photo, comedian Tracy Morgan performs at "Eddie Murphy: One Night Only," a celebration of Murphy's career at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills, Calif. Morgan is recovering but is expected to remain hospitalized for several weeks after having surgery on a broken leg suffered in a chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike early Saturday, June 7, 2014, that left two others critically injured and one dead. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision, File)

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. - Actor and comedian Tracy Morgan is showing signs of improvement following a highway crash that badly injured him and killed one of his friends, his spokesman said Thursday.

Morgan, a former star of "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock," remained hospitalized in critical but stable condition on Thursday but his medical team is "optimistic that his recovery is progressing," spokesman Lewis Kay said.

"Today was a better day," Kay said.

Morgan's fiancee remained by his side and was relaying to him everyone's prayers and good wishes, Kay said.

Morgan, 45, suffered broken ribs and a broken leg in the Saturday morning crash on the New Jersey Turnpike. The crash killed fellow comedian James McNair and seriously injured two other people in Morgan's limo bus.

Prosecutors say Wal-Mart driver Kevin Roper's truck hit Morgan's limo. The Jonesboro, Georgia, resident has pleaded not guilty to death by auto and assault by auto charges.

A criminal complaint alleges Roper hadn't slept for more than 24 hours before the accident when he swerved to avoid slowed traffic on the turnpike and plowed into Morgan's limo.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., based in Bentonville, Arkansas, has not explained what Roper's driving route was. It has said it believes he was in compliance with federal safety regulations.

Morgan's assistant, Jeffrey Millea, of Shelton, Connecticut, and comedian Ardie Fuqua Jr., of Jersey City, were injured in the crash. Kay said Millea's wife had reported that her husband "has also shown much improvement over the past few days" and that she was very thankful for the love and support their family has received.

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