NEWPORT BEACH— On August 20, Matthew Thomas – a coma survivor who was once given a five percent chance of life– will pedal his hydrobike (essentially a bicycle on pontoons) from Avalon to the Orange County Sheriff Harbor Patrol Station in Newport Beach. Thomas will attempt to break his previous record from his 2011 ride, which took him from Catalina to Long Beach. The 30-mile journey is expected to take roughly seven hours. In 1991, Thomas was a passenger in an alcohol-related DUI crash where the car went off a 30-foot bridge near Lake Sherwood. He was thrown from the car through the windshield, landed on rocks, and went into a coma with a grim prognosis of a five percent chance of survival. After three months in a coma, he began the years-long road to recovery. “I woke up paralyzed on my left side – couldn’t read, write, talk, shower, shave, eat or dress,” said Thomas in a press release. Today, Thomas is an in-demand public speaker, brain injury consultant, wildlife photographer, runner, bodyboarder, snowboarder, and avid golfer. “He healed himself in a way that far exceeds any conventional medical wisdom,” said Dr. Philip O’Carroll, Thomas’s neurologist, in the press release. Matthew will depart Avalon at approximately 9 a.m. and should arrive at the Orange County Sheriff Harbor Patrol Station at 1901 Bayside Dr. in Newport by 4:30 p.m. Radio legend The Poorman of KOCI’s 101.5 FM’s “The Poorman’s Morning Rush” will be on hand to host the festivities. Learn more about Thomas’s journey at: https://youtu.be/N6eMVV2FzZY.
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