“My family and friends say I’m such an inspiration, but really I credit RIM. They gave me the push to get back to the person I was before the accident.”-Matthew Herrod
“Think about how much life is worth before taking that first sip of alcohol,” says Matthew Herrod. “My days of getting drunk are over. It’s not worth it.”
On Friday, April 1, 2011, Matt went to a friend’s party. The night started off in the standard way – drinks, music, friends – but it ended in disaster.
“There were close to 100 people crammed in the second floor apartment,” says Matt. “Before we knew it, the police came to break it up.
“I was turning 21 in two weeks and didn’t want to get in trouble for underage drinking. So I did what five other kids had done: I jumped off the balcony.”
Matt lost his balance when he landed, falling and hitting his head on the frozen ground. He spent the next three weeks in a coma. No one knew if he would survive.
“When I woke up, I couldn’t walk, talk or eat,” says Matt. “I was in pretty bad shape when I was transferred to RIM.
“I was there for five weeks. They got me back on my feet, talking and eating again.”
Matt believes his recovery was successful because he embraced the help he received at RIM. When he came home, he continued the exercises they taught him and really pushed himself.
“I went back to school in the winter and it was great,” says Matt.
Now Matt can run on a treadmill and is majoring in broadcast journalism, which motivates him even more to get his speech back fully.
“My family and friends say I’m such an inspiration, but really I credit RIM,” says Matt. “They gave me the push to get back to the person I was before the accident.”