Simon Richardson MBE was released from hospital today and will return to his Porthcawl home after making “rapid progress” from his life-threatening accident just over three weeks ago.
The double Paralympic gold medallist was involved in a hit-and-run incident in Brigend in August 17, breaking his spine, breastbone and pelvis.
“He’s only been out of the intensive care unit for five days, it’s rapid progress,” said sponsor Phil Jones.
44 year old Richardson was under heavy sedation at the University Hospital of Wales for a fortnight as his
According to Jones, one of the breakthroughs was
reinflating his lung and treating his blood clots, allowing him to
breath unsupported in recent days. He can now sit in a wheelchair unaided and walked eleven metres with the help of sticks yesterday.
“The medical staff feel confident that the body brace will hold his spine straight, so he can lie in bed at home,” Jones said.
“He is in great spirits. Mentally, Simon is like iron, he has a very strong resolve. He was 100% clear, his goal is to be back at the same level of fitness pre-accident. This is comeback 2.0,” Jones said, referring to the return to top form Richardson made after a very similar incident in 2001.
“Simon’s broad estimate [for recovery] is at least six months of physiotherapy – a static bike will form part of his recovery, which we all smiled at,” Jones said. He estimates a return to full form for Richardson will take a whole year.
At the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008, Richardson took gold in the LC3/4 kilometre time-trial and 3km individual pursuit.
Richardson was awarded an MBE the following year for services to disabled sport.