Family and friends of a Salmon Arm man are rallying to help after an unfortunate weekend accident left him with a serious spinal cord injury.
Matthew Loring, a self-employed sheet metal worker, was at his friend Gord Erickson’s Raven home Sunday. Loring dove into the swimming pool in a section where the pool was too shallow, fracturing three vertebrae in his neck.
The father of three was rushed to Shuswap Lake General Hospital Sunday afternoon where he was stabilized and airlifted to Vancouver General Hospital to undergo a seven-hour surgery.
“While the surgery went well, there is a strong chance he may never walk again,” said Mike Morgan, whose daughter Gloria Morgan is Loring’s partner. Gloria is currently in Vancouver with Loring, who remains on a ventilator.
Friends indicate Loring has been able to squeeze Gloria’s hand, but doctors are preparing the couple for a difficult long-term prognosis.
“However this goes, it will be a long recovery,” says Morgan. “They are saying six to eight weeks in hospital and six months to a year in rehab.”
Morgan says in addition to supporting his three children, Loring was also assisting his parents, as his father suffers from Alzheimer’s.
“He was the real breadwinner for the whole family, so it’s going to be very tough. There’s no insurance or disability because he’s self-employed.”
Foreseeing the expenses the family will be facing, Morgan has set up a trust fund account (number 1520675) at the Salmon Arm Savings and Credit Union in the name of Matthew Loring for anyone who might want to help.
As well, a group of friends have organized a special dinner and dance fundraising evening to be held Saturday, June 25 starting at 3:30 p.m.
The Whiskey Danglers, Sasha Lewis and other performances will be held at the Deye Farm at 1680-70th Street SE, past Klahani Park.
Tickets are available for $20 each at the Hideaway Liquor Store, Pinz Tattoo and Minos Greek House Restaurant.
There will be free rides home and camper or tent space available.
All proceeds from the event will be donated to the trust fund.
For more information, visit the Matthew Loring Fundraiser page on Facebook.