Survivor of flesh-eating bacteria returns for the Med City Marathon

[anvplayer video=”5174336″ station=”998128″]

(ABC 6 News)) – The Med City Marathon is set to take place on May 13. The race marks one man’s return to Rochester after battling a terrifying illness – flesh-eating bacteria.

Chris Gordon is a life-long runner who one day in 2015 scratched his arm on his garage door. He contracted flesh-eating bacteria.

“That’s the last thing I thought was ‘Oh I’m going to die from this.’ At one point I had a 30% chance at survival,” Chris Gordon said.

However, looking at the way Gordon runs now, you wouldn’t believe it.

Eight years go he had a swollen arm, a 5-day coma, two months in the hospital, reconstructive surgery and almost $1,000,000 in medical bills. Yet, Gordon still counts himself a lucky man.

“There is positivity anywhere you are,” he says.

“The community support really was very helpful in moving forward,” added Gordon’s wife, Becky.

As Gordon gears up for the Med City Marathon, his family reflects on what it was like to see him in the hospital.

“It’s just amazing. When we remember what it was like when he could just barely turn his head or move in the hospital and now he’s out there running for 26 miles at a shot,” said Gordon’s father-in-law Bill.

Gordon got out of the hospital and and went straight on to a treadmill – training for months. He started racing again. This is his first time running the Med CityMarathon since his stay at Mayo Clinic nearly 10 years ago.

For Gordon,, the marathon is also a big thank you. He has gratitude and appreciation to the Mayo Clinic staff that literally, and figuratively, made Gordon the man he is today.

“You know, yes they’re professional. They work at Mayo. But they also went out of their way to become friends of mine,” Gordon explained.

Going forward, Gordon says he’s running head-first into his future as a happy, healthy man. Pushing himself to be better and encouraging those around him to do the same.

“This is what you did. You affected my life in such a way that I can push myself to be the best version of myself.”

Now he takes his story around to local schools to remind people to always look for things to be grateful for, and to push students to be the best they can be.