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Cottonwood pastor Conley recovering By Charles M. Kelly | Fri, Feb 07 2014 03:13 PM

A Los Alamitos pastor is recovering from injuries he sustained in a Catalina Island boating accident last week. Pastor Bayless Conley of Cottonwood Church was one of three men who were injured when their powerboat ran aground. According to the Cottonwood Church website, the three men were fishing at the time.

The other injured men have been identified as Pastor Jeff Perry of St. Lewis Family Church, Chesterfield, Mo.; and Keith Johnson, a member of Cottonwood Church. “We are pleased to report that Pastor Bayless Conley has shown significant improvement over the past several days,” said the church website on Sunday, Feb. 2.

The website has not been updated since that date.

“His doctors are very encouraged by his progress, and he is now in stable condition. He will likely remain hospitalized for a few more weeks. Following his release, the doctors have said they expect a full and complete recovery.”

Conley reportedly arrived at the hospital in critical condition.

“Pastor Janet Conley (Bayless Conley’s wife) is very grateful and thankful for the love, support and prayers that have been coming in from around the world. The Conley family is so humbled by the support of the members of Cottonwood Church over the last week,” the church website said.

Randal Taylor, a spokesman for the church, said last Friday that Conley was doing much better.

According to Taylor, the church held a prayer for Conley during the church’s regular Wednesday night service on Jan. 28

He also said updates on Bayless Conley’s condition would be posted on the website roughly every two to three days.

The powerboat ran aground at Arrow Point on Catalina Island on Monday night, Jan. 27, according to Capt. Doug Fetteroll, commander of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Station in Avalon.

All three men aboard were injured, two of them seriously, according to Inspector Scott Miller, a public information officer for the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Fetteroll said the Sheriff’s Department would investigate the cause of the crash. “On January 27, 2014, at approximately 1900 hours (7 p.m.), three adult men in a power boat ran aground at Arrow Point on Catalina Island. Arrow Point is approximately 3 miles west of the Isthmus,” Fetteroll said in a Tuesday, Jan. 28, email to the Catalina Islander.

Baywatch Avalon paramedics were the first to respond, according to Fetteroll. “The three men were treated at the scene by Baywatch paramedics and then airlifted to hospitals on the mainland,” Fetteroll said Tuesday.

“On Monday night (Jan. 27), Pastor Bayless underwent surgery because of soft tissue injuries sustained to his neck and throat area. After surgery his doctors reported that all of his vital organs and his spinal cord are fully intact and without injury,” the church website said.

According to the website, on Wednesday, Jan. 29, doctors performed a second surgery to inspect Conley’s neck and throat. “According to his doctors, neither his vocal cords nor his voice box was damaged,” the website said.

The church also provided an update on Conley’s fellow fishermen. “Keith (Johnson) sustained facial injuries, possible broken ribs, and remains in the hospital,” the website said. “Pastor Jeff (Perry of Chesterfield, Mo.) sustained a fractured sternum and cuts and bruises. According to his family, Pastor Jeff is in good spirits and doing well, and has been released from the hospital.”

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