Arguably one of the greatest welterweights in MMA, Matt Hughes was involved in a horrendous accident in 2017. The former two-time welterweight king suffered life-threatening injuries after his pick-up truck collided with a moving train in Raymond, Illinois.
The tragic episode took place on the Beelers Trail when Matt Hughes was on his way back from Montgomery County. Hughes couldn't spot an approaching train due to the absence of railroad crossing signs. The train crashed into Hughes' pick-up truck on the passenger side, resulting in fatal injuries.
"I will try and explain... I was helping a farmer and I was taking diesel to a tractor and filling the tractor in the back of his truck. I had diesel and DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid), which is a diesel mixture. I was in the country going across a railroad track. At the time, the corn was up, so I couldn't see the railroad track well. And there was no cross sign or lights, it's just a yellow sign. So, it was a bad angle... you can't see the track at all. Terrible angle... I was just going to fill his tractor and got hit," Matt Hughes said.
Matt Hughes was rushed to a hospital where the doctors put him in a nineteen-day-long medically-induced coma. Although the retired fighter made rapid progress, his physical abilities have been severely hampered. Four years after the accident, Matt Hughes continues to improve on his motor skills, showing up regularly to the gym.
What urged Matt Hughes to rebound from suicidal tendencies?
Matt Hughes claims to have a tight-knit support system consisting of his close friends and family. However, the Pioneer wing inductee admits to having gone through a depressing phase where he considered taking his own life.
"I remember nothing about the day. This is all from people who were with me. I just don't remember anything. I got the traumatic brain injury from the train hitting me so hard... gave me a brain shear, which is tearing the axon away from the brain," he said.
However, being a former champion, Hughes fought through suicidal tendencies to emerge as an example for people suffering in similar situations.
"I was in a coma for nineteen days... I'll admit that I have thought about suicide but if I committed suicide, I have so many people watching me that might think it's cool to do the same thing. So I can't do that," added Matt Hughes.