OAKHURST – The town’s Honorary Mayor is recovering from surgery following an incident in which he was injured earlier this month.
Mat Sands, currently serving as the Honorary Mayor of Oakhurst on behalf of the Boys & Girls Club, reports that he was assaulted on Friday, Oct. 10. Because of a pending investigation, only a limited number of facts are being released about the incident.
“I was knocked down to the ground by force and never saw it coming,” said Sands. “I had no time to even put a hand out to lessen the impact.” As a result, the active community organizer suffered a broken hip, requiring him to undergo surgery in Fresno on Saturday, Oct. 11.
According to Sands, an Oakhurst resident has been charged with assault and an investigation is ongoing to discover a possible motive. Sands’ close friend, Misty Tote, has set up an account to help defray medical costs as he recovers from surgery.
“The surgeon added a metal plate along with three screws, and is confident that the surgery was successful,” Tote said in the account summary. “Although Mat has had joint issues since he was a baby diagnosed with Juvenile Arthritis, his right hip was his ‘strong hip,’ and he is working hard to regain that strength so he can remain on his feet.”
Sands’ successful run for Honorary Mayor on behalf of the local Boys & Girls Club helped to raise thousands of dollars, and the internet entrepreneur has been instrumental recently in a campaign to coordinate monetary donations for victims of the Oakhurst fires, through Yosemite Bank.
Now, the Honorary Mayor is busy getting better after a serious, unexpected surgery, and trying to pay all the bills that go along with this kind of medical emergency.
“I’m back on my feet, with a little help from my new walker,” Sands reported online. “I hope to ditch the walker by next week.” He’s grateful for all the support from well-wishers. “I am truly blessed to have such great friends and family,” he said.
Misty Tote set up the Go Fund Me online account with a goal of $5,000 to help Mayor Mat Sands out when it comes to expenses.
“Mat has always been there for our community and has been a great friend to many of us,” Tote explained. “It’s time for us to give a little back to Mat. Let’s take the financial burden of this event away from him so that he can focus on recovery.”