CONNELLSVILLE, Pa. – Matthew McKnight hopes nobody manages to top his feat in the Guinness Book of World Records. That's because McKnight holds the record for "Greatest Distance Thrown in a Car Accident" in the book's 2008 edition.
The 29-year-old record-holder lived to tell about being thrown 118 feet by a car that hit him while traveling about 70 mph. He was struck on Oct. 26, 2001, while trying to help accident victims along Interstate 376 in Monroeville, about 15 miles east of Pittsburgh.
He suffered two dislocated shoulders plus a broken shoulder, pelvis, leg and tailbone. He spent two weeks in the hospital and 80 days in rehab before returning to work in April 2002.
McKnight is a volunteer firefighter and paramedic, though he wasn't on duty when he stopped to help the accident victims. He works full-time as a communications specialist at Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh.
McKnight's emergency room physician, Dr. Eric Brader, submitted paperwork for the record, which Guinness recognized in 2003. It was not listed in the book until the 2008 edition, however.
"I thought it was a big joke. Dr. Brader is known for joking around a lot," McKnight told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "But when he brought (the paperwork) to me, I saw how serious he was."