COSTA MESA (CBSLA.com) — Friends, family and the community have rallied to support a 47-year-old Orange County man who was nearly paralyzed in a surfing accident.
Three weeks ago, Pete Statti was surfing in Huntington Beach when his board caught the edge of a wave, which sent his body flying.
Since it was a low tide, his head hit a sandbar.
Conner Reeves, 16, was surfing nearby and saw Statti floating face-down in the water.
“I swam over and flipped him over. He took like, a huge breath,” said Reeves. “The whole day I was in shock. It was really hard to believe it happened. I’m definitely not the same.”
Statti was taken to the hospital, where he is still recovering.
His wife, Michelle, said he’s getting better each day.
“On Friday, he walked in a walker. He took about 40 steps. Every day he is improving,” she said.
Statti is a self-employed painting contractor, so his close group of friends and local residents stepped in to help with his medical expenses.
Every dollar from every tip collected at Patrick’s Pub in Costa Mesa Wednesday night was all “For Pete’s Sake.”
Family friend Adrienne Huff said, “We’ve all been supportive and have come together to help any way we can to be there for him.”
“Our friends and family and people we don’t even know… the community…has come together and has been completely overwhelming with joy and love and we appreciate it so much,” said Michelle.
To help Statti out, visit For Pete’s Sake on Facebook.