Volume 8, Issue 77  |  September 26, 2023SubscribeAdvertise

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Coma survivor and brain injury advocate to attempt new hydrobike record from Catalina to Newport Harbor on September 16

On Saturday, Sept. 16t, Matthew Thomas – a coma survivor who was once given a 5% chance of living – will again pedal his hydrobike from Avalon, Catalina to the Orange County Sheriff’s Harbor Patrol Station in Newport Beach. This ride, originally scheduled for August 20, had to be postponed due to weather.

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

coma survivor ocean

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Thomas will attempt to beat his previous record of 11 hours

Thomas will be departing Avalon between 7-9 a.m. and plans to arrive at the Orange County Sheriff’s Harbor Patrol Station at 1901 Bayside Drive in Newport between 2-5 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 7-11 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, Calif. Thrown from the vehicle, his head hit rocks and he went into a coma. The prognosis was grim – he was given a 5% chance of survival and would remain in a coma. 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 recalled.

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

For more information, call 949.375.1178, visit www.positive-matters.org, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Watch Thomas’ Straight Out of a Coma documentary streaming on Tubi TV.

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