Surgeon Walked 6 Miles in Snowstorm to OR
Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw helped out a few stranded strangers along the way
By Arden Dier, Newser Staff
Posted Jan 31, 2014 7:04 AM CST
Abandoned cars and trucks litter the road after a winter snow storm on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, near Birmingham, Ala.   (AP Photo/David Tulis)

(Newser) – You think you're dedicated to your job? Probably not compared to this guy: Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw was needed for an emergency brain surgery at Birmingham, Alabama's Trinity Medical Center on Tuesday morning, but he was six miles away at another hospital. With a snowstorm raging and traffic at a standstill, getting there seemed unfeasible. "When I got out of the doctors' parking lot up the hill, unfortunately there were accidents to the right and accidents to the left," he tells WBRC. But Hrynkiw is Trinity's only neurosurgeon, and the patient "had a 90% chance of death. If he didn't have surgery, he'd be dead. It's not going to happen on my shift," he said, per NBC News. So, at 10:45am, in 20-degree weather, he decided to walk.

Hrynkiw checked the patient's CT scan (which he received via text) as he walked—still wearing "my slip-ons from the operating groom and my scrubs. So I was not really geared up for my adventure." Along the way he helped strangers push their cars away from a ditch and eventually got help from a passerby, who gave him a lift part of the way. He was operating on the patient within two hours of starting his trek. "This just speaks volumes to the dedication of the man. When I saw him, all I could say is 'you are a good man,'" a nurse tells the AP, adding the patient is now "doing well." Hrynkiw, on the other hand, says, "It really wasn't that big of a deal. I walk a lot." (It wasn't the only medical story with a positive ending to come out of Tuesday's storm.)

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Showing 3 of 60 comments
viva_yo
Feb 2, 2014 1:50 PM CST
Once I walked 2.5 miles to a subway during a blizzard with 2' snow.
BCS
Feb 1, 2014 1:05 PM CST
So the guy walked 6 miles in cold weather. Why is this news worthy? I live in New England. There are people who jog farther multiple times a week, in worse weather, just for exercise. " Hrynkiw, on the other hand, says, "It really wasn't that big of a deal. I walk a lot."
wartengu
Feb 1, 2014 12:43 PM CST
You would be surprised at the things people will do to get paid.