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Brain Surgeon: Snow Storm Can't Stop Doc Who Walks 6 Miles for Surgery

Image: Brain Surgeon: Snow Storm Can't Stop Doc Who Walks 6 Miles for Surgery Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw

By Alexandra Ward   |   Friday, 31 Jan 2014 01:40 PM

The 62-year-old brain surgeon who trekked six miles during the South's snow storm to save a patient Tuesday didn’t really think the walk was "that big of a deal."

Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw was assisting another neurosurgeon Tuesday morning at Brookwood Medical Center in Birmingham, Ala., when he got a call on his phone that there was an emergency situation involving a patient with a traumatic brain injury at his resident hospital, Trinity Medical Center.

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With the heavy snow having locked down local traffic, Hrynkiw, Trinity's only neurosurgeon, decided to make the six-mile journey on foot.

"The cell service was bad so we were fading in and out," Steve Davis, charge nurse in the neuro intensive care unit at Trinity, told AL.com. "At one point, I heard him say, 'I'm walking.'"

Hrynkiw made it safely to Trinity, even stopping at one point to help a woman whose car had gotten stuck, and the patient is reportedly doing well and recovering from the surgery.

"It really wasn't that big of a deal," Hrynkiw said Thursday at a news conference. "It was kind of a fun journey, unfortunately I had my slip-ons and my scrubs ... so I was not really geared for my adventure."

The snow storm crippled the south Tuesday, forcing kids to sleep overnight at schools and stranding hundreds of motorists. The extreme storm has even been blamed for five deaths.

"It was not just a walk in the park," Keith Granger, CEO of Trinity, told AL.com. "It's a remarkable physical feat and mental feat. And we have an individual alive today who wouldn't be here if not for his efforts."

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