Man Survives On Rainwater After Being Trapped In Crashed Truck For Six Days

Screenshot/A|BC7 Chicago

Dana Abizaid Contributor
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An Indiana man who survived for six days in his crashed truck under an overpass was rescued Tuesday afternoon after fishermen discovered the wreck, ABC7 reported.

State police said Matthew R. Reum was trapped in his truck and survived on rainwater for nearly a week before two good Samaritans spotted his crashed truck while they were scouting for fishing spots, according to ABC7. The two fishermen – Nivardo Delatorre and his father-in-law Mario Garcia – looked into the vehicle and found Reum, who they thought was dead, ABC7 reported. However, when Garcia tapped him to make sure, Reum woke up and began to speak, the outlet reported. (RELATED: Washington Woman Driving Pickup Truck Falls 60 Feet Off Cliff, Lives To Tell The Tale)

“He had a jacket almost like mine, and all I seen was this part, the shoulder. The moment I touched the shoulder, he swung around. He woke up,” Garcia said.

Reum told the men that he’d been stranded and paralyzed since last Wednesday and that his cellphone had fallen out of his reach, ABC7 reported.

Garcia, who called 911, said, “One more day and something could have been very different here,” according to ABC7.

It took several hours to extricate Reum from the wreck before he was airlifted to a trauma center, the outlet reported.

A spokesman for Reum’s union, Boilermakers Local 374, said, “We are thankful Matt is alive and grateful for the men who found him. Matt’s strong will and toughness speak volumes through this ordeal.”

Reum, who police say showed a “will to survive” that “was nothing short of extraordinary,” remains in the intensive care unit at South Bend Memorial Hospital, ABC7 reported. He had had to have part of his leg amputated due to injuries sustained in the crash, according to the outlet.

“Matthew is a great guy, always smiling, coming to work in a joyful mood. He’s a hard worker, too, great welder. There’s not enough good things to say about the guy,” his friend, Mike Ortiz, said.

“I hope everybody gets together and help him. Helps him out, he lost his leg, and I just hope that they kinda look at how our careers go, and that he may need some support at this moment,” Ortiz added.

A GoFundMe for Reum has raised over $53,000 as of Wednesday, ABC7 reported.