UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes has been in a fight for his life since June 16th when his pickup truck was slammed on the passenger side by an oncoming train in Raymond, Illinois. He was placed in a coma as a result. However, some positive news has surfaced regarding his recovery.
Other than his family, only a handful of people that know Hughes better than fellow Hall of Famer Pat Miletich. If you recall, Miletich taught Hughes what he knew as Hughes went on to become the first great longtime UFC welterweight champion in MMA’s modern era.
During a recent edition of The MMA Hour, Miletich provided an update on Hughes’ battle to recover from the horrific accident. The former UFC champion is no longer in a coma.
“He is surprising the doctors,” Miletich said. “He’s making great leaps, and he’s no longer in a coma, and he’s improving. It’s going to be a long road. Any type of head trauma at that level, there’s going to be some rehab.”
Miletich would go onto explain that Hughes was apparently stuck on a hill and wasn’t able to cross the track in time to avoid the train.
“The [train] engineer said, Matt had stopped on the gravel road,” Miletich said. “It’s a hill, goes up, it’s a real quick hill that goes up to the railroad tracks. He had stopped, then tried to get across it in time. The train was going almost 50 MPH.
“When you’re out in the country, there’s no crossing guards, there’s no lights,” Miletich continued. “It’s almost like, he saw it, then tried to beat it. What I would say is that you’re on a gravel road out in country on a hill and you’re trying to punch it and get over, you’re going to swing tires, he didn’t get across in time and got clipped on the passenger side.”
Miletich noted that he hasn’t been able to visit Hughes at HSHS St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, Ill., since the accident but he has no doubt that they will meet again.
“Nobody is allowed to visit him besides family,” Miletich said. “That’s it right now. They don’t want to overload him, they want his energy to go to healing and not to anything else.”
“I’m 100 percent sure he’s going to make a full recovery,” he said.