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11/08/23: Coma Survivor and Brain Injury Advocate to Attempt New Hydrobike Record from Catalina to N

On Sunday, Aug. 20, Matthew Thomas – a coma survivor who was once given a five percent chance of living – will again pedal his hydrobike from Avalon, Catalina to the Orange County Sheriffs Harbor Patrol Station in Newport Beach.

Matthew is attempting to beat his August 2022, 11-hour ride, where he faced unyielding high winds and rough surf. This time he is shooting for seven hours and a new world record. (Estimated distance is 30 miles.)

Matthew will be departing Avalon between 7 and 9 a.m. and plans to arrive at the Orange County Sheriffs Harbor Patrol Station at 1901 Bayside Dr. in Newport Beach between 2 and 5 p.m.

Radio legend Jim “Poorman” Trenton of KOCI’s 101.5 FM’s “The Poorman’s Morning Rush” will be on hand to host the festivities and after-party. Tune into KOCI via radio or internet weekdays from 7 to 11 a.m. for regular updates.

In 1991, Thomas was involved in a DUI crash that almost took his life. He was a passenger in a car that drove off a 30-foot bridge on Lake Sherwood, CA.

Thrown from the vehicle, Thomas’ head hit rocks and he went into a coma. The prognosis was grim – he was given a five percent chance of survival.

After three months in a coma, he began a life-long road to recovery.

“As I slowly came to, I realized I was paralyzed on my left side – couldn’t read, write, talk, shower, shave, eat or dress,” Thomas recalls.

Today, Thomas is an in-demand public speaker for MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and other organizations, a consultant, photographer, body boarder and avid golfer. He is living proof there are no limits to the human brain.

According to his longtime neurologist, Dr. Philip O’Carroll, “He healed himself in a way that far exceeds any conventional medical wisdom.”

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