Japanese tourist Haruto Morishita is paralyzed after diving into the Dee Why pool.

A group of friends have raised an incredible amount of $100,000 to support their friend who was paralyzed from the chest after diving into a shallow pool on a Sydney beach.

Haruto Morishita, 22, is described by friends as a keen surfer, figure skater, photographer, and all-round “good friend.”

After moving to Sydney’s northern beaches on a work visa earlier this year, Mr. Morishita quickly settled into his new city.

Everything changed in the blink of an eye, when on October 27 he dived into the ocean pool at Dee Wye Beach and hit his head on the bottom.

Mr. Morishita suffered a cervical fracture that “seriously damaged” his spinal cord.

“Despite being conscious, he was unable to move his arms or legs and was taken by ambulance, escorted by police, to the Royal North Shore Hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery to straighten and stabilize his fractured spine,” he wrote. friend Tony Fry on his GoFundMe website. page.

Sharing the news from his hospital bed, Mr. Morishita said he is working on his recovery so that everyone can welcome him as “once recovered.”

“Firstly, I would like to apologize to everyone for causing a lot of worry and anxiety due to the accident I brought on myself,” he said.

“I would also like to express my eternal gratitude to everyone for their great support, from those who knew me before and those whom I have not yet had the pleasure of meeting.

“I will turn all of your support into strength and work my hardest in my rehab journey. I will work hard every day so that one day I will meet all of you as a recovered self.”

The campaign has already raised $99,371 to help bring down the cost of what is expected to be a “long and expensive” road to recovery.

Because Mr. Morishita is on a short-stay visa, he can only access limited insurance coverage, and his loved ones are still not sure how much it costs.

Paralyzed from the chest down and barely breathing on his own, the young man’s life changed dramatically.

Now he’s off life support and can talk, but Mr. Morishita has been told his body will never be the same again.

“We were told that the chances of his body movements returning to their previous state are close to zero, since the damaged spinal cord cannot be repaired,” Fry said.

“But our Haruto, despite these traumatic events, is in a good mood. ‘When can I start physical therapy?’ was one of the first questions he asked since he learned to speak.”

Mr Morishita’s parents applied for an emergency passport and flew to Sydney as soon as they could, but had to return home to get their affairs in order.

“Our family is overwhelmed with gratitude for the warm messages and support from everyone,” they shared on their GoFundMe page.

“We will support him in every way we can, so if you continue to cheer him on, we will be eternally grateful.”

Mr. Fry thanked the northern beach community for their heroic efforts on behalf of Mr. Morishita and his family, who rushed to the aid of the 22-year-old in the immediate aftermath of the horrific accident.

“Northern Beaches local community who didn’t hesitate to help our dear friend at the pool,” he said.

He also expressed his gratitude to the paramedics, police, firefighters and medical staff at the Royal North Shore Hospital, where Mr Morishita remains in intensive care.

Originally published as Friends raise $100,000 for ‘good friend’ paralyzed after diving into Sydney pool