Matt visited Oak Hill after returning home from the race on Wednesday, January 24 because he wanted to tell our students and staff how much they motivated him during the race. Matt told Oak Hill that he used our students to inspire him along this grueling journey. He brought the card that our students and staff made for him and kept it in his “cabin” so he could look at the photos of our students and read the words of encouragement from the everyone. Matt also shared with us that he watched an online video course from Yale University on autism AND watched the Temple Grandin movie, during his short breaks in-between his rowing so he could learn more about autism!! This tells you what a special person Matt is.
On one day during the race, Matt even called Oak Hill School from the middle of the ocean on a satellite phone and talked to our students and staff for a few minutes. One of our students, Katie, shared with him the following message: Dear Matt, we are so proud of you. Good luck, be safe, and I hope you win this race. Do it for your family and your OHS family. Enjoy the adventure...go get them!
Matt told the class that Katie’s words were a motivator to him on that day of the race. He said he shared what Katie told him with his crew and they used her words to inspire them to average over 90 miles a day for the last 5 days in order to break the World Record!
Matt chose Oak Hill to be his charity of choice for this race and he is going to continue to help us raise funds throughout this year by his participation in this race. Matt told us during his visit that one of Latitude 35’s sponsors, Nucor, committed to donate $3,500 to Oak Hill School!
Also, when National Geographic is finished with the documentary they did on Latitude 35, Matt promised to have a fundraising “Premier” for Oak Hill School!