Joe Robinson’s parents were told he had just a 3 per cent chance of survival after fracturing his skull and neck in a devastating car crash.
But now Joe, 29, is set to tackle the ‘toughest race on Earth’, running 156 miles in 50°C heat over six days wearing a 15kg back pack.
It will mark 10 years since Joe got a lift home from a party that ended in a fatal car crash.
Joe Robinson in John Radcliffe hospital soon after the accident where he was given just a 3 per cent chance of surviving (Picture: PA)On April 7, 2009, school friend Gabriella Edmondson, then 17, lost control of her car and crashed, killing a passenger in the back seat and seriously injuring Joe, who was 19 at the time.
Joe’s parents were told it was unlikely he’d live past the first night and were then given the news he had a 95 per cent chance of paralysis.
Three ministers quit amid key Brexit votes to let MPs take controlOn his JustGiving page, where he explains he will be running the Marathon des Sables alongside his sister Grace, Joe said: ‘The last 10 years have been very long, very tough and incredibly challenging.’
He said: ‘I broke my back in three different places, my neck in two difference places and a large fracture across my skull.
‘While I was in an induced coma for almost a month, I picked up MRSA, meningitis and pneumonia.
‘Although I was told I was never going to walk again, they gave me little hope of being able to talk and see (due to the brain damage).
Joe is running the gruelling Marathon des Sables with his sister Grace (Picture: JustGiving/Siblings in the Sahara)
Joe, then 19, in a wheelchair after the car crash (Picture; JustGiving/Siblings in the Sahara)
Joe credits his parents and sister Grace for helping his miraculous recovery (Picture: JustGiving/Siblings in the Sahara)‘Despite the on-going challenges of living with a severe brain injury and the continual neck and back pain, it only felt right to do something extraordinary 10 years later.’
Joe thanked his surgeons, consultants, psychologists, occupational therapists and physiotherapists with helping him to defy all the odds and now wants to raise money for the charity Walk Once More, which seeks to find a cure for spinal cord injury.
The Marathon des Sables is a gruelling 156 mile race split over six days in the heart of the Sahara Desert.
With the sun beating down, Joe and Grace will have to run over sand dunes as temperatures reach 50°C, carrying all of their equipment on their backs.
‘The toughest day is day four where we have to take on the double-marathon,’ Joe said.
‘This will be after having already covered over 100km in the first three days.’
To donate, visit Joe’s JustGiving page here.