Woman who beat life-threatening illness completes solo row across Atlantic

Woman who beat life-threatening illness completes solo row across Atlantic

Kiko Matthews said she was "a bit proud" (Credit: Twitter - @Kikomatthews)

Friday, March 23, 2018

A former teacher who had a life-threatening illness has completed a solo Atlantic row.

Kiko Matthews had never rowed before taking on the challenge and has been congratulated by supporters who claim she's the fastest woman to ever complete the feat, although official timings are yet to be released.

The woman was diagnosed with Cushing's disease in 2009 which almost resulted in her death and last year another tumour was discovered. The 36-year-old suffered insomnia, memory loss and osteoporosis during her illness.

She had life-saving treatment at King's College Hospital, London, and then decided to help found The Big Stand charity and a paddle-boarding business, leaving her job as a science teacher.

Matthews has now managed to raise more than £70,000 by completing the row which will help build a new intensive care unit at the hospital.

She spent 50 days at sea before arriving in Barbados last night (March 22) to be met by her parents, brother and nephew.

She had started out in Gran Canaria and has travelled 3,000 nautical miles.

After she finished the row, she said she was "a bit proud" and hoped to be an inspiration to others.

Matthews said: "The thought that, eight months ago, I was lying in hospital having my brain operated on, and now I am here having rowed the Atlantic, I guess I am a bit proud.

"I have shown that anyone can attempt anything given the right attitude, belief, and support.

"I want to use my story to inspire women to challenge themselves."

Watch a video showing Matthews preparing for the row below


TRAILER! Looking for #SPONSORSHIP to make this #documentary happen. If you'd like your logo on the boat & seen across many corporate, school & event talks that I'll be giving on my return please get in touch Kiko@clipstone.tv . Thanks to @ClipstoneTV - @simonwaldock @SARAIKIRK pic.twitter.com/HUoIncS9F9

— Kiko Matthews (@Kikomatthews) December 5, 2017