South Jersey Man Turns Tragedy Into Triumph After Accident
"Everything anyone said I couldn't do, I try to do."
If you are looking for motivation, look no further than Matt Fumo's life story.
In 2017, Matt was a recent graduate of Ocean City High School with a promising future as a college baseball pitcher when he suffered a broken neck in a swimming accident after jumping off a support pillar on the Ocean City-Longport Bridge.
The prognosis was bleak. Matt remembers doctors telling him he had no chance of ever walking again. He was told he would be on a breathing tube for at least a year.
But, Matt refused to lose and he did everything they said he wouldn't be able to do.
As he writes on his LinkedIn profile, Matt did what they said couldn't be done.
I am a running quadriplegic. After a freak accident diving into the ocean I was told by my doctors that I had no chance of ever walking again. They also told me I would be on a breathing tube for at least a year. I was off the breathing tube within a week. After my first muscle moved, under my injury, a few days after the breathing tube there began gradual progress. I was able to stand, walk, run, then play sports all under three years.
Matt went on to participate in a triathlon on the fifth anniversary of his diving accident.
I had paid close attention to Matt Fumo's accident and recovery back in 2017. Matt's aunt, Tricia Ciliberto, is a friend, and her concern for her nephew led me to write about his recovery journey.
It had been a while, though, since I thought of Matt until I saw his story featured this week on Action News.
Matt Fumo, 24, is now an aide and mentor to others recovering from catastrophic injuries at Project Walk New Jersey in Mt. Laurel.
Can you imagine the impact of Matt's guidance on someone who is struggling to overcome an injury and return to a better quality of life?
This story made me so happy! The old adage says that things happen for a reason, and Matt Fumo's life story is a good reason to believe that the adage is true.
Watch the 6ABC Hometown Heroes feature...