posted on May, 3 2010 @ 05:42 AM
This is my first touchy-feely post. I work in critical care medicine, and I see the bad stuff all day, and I get jaded like anybody else who sees
everyone, and everything in its worst case scenario day to day.
At the end of my shift yesterday I was perterbed that my relief was 45 minutes late. When he did show up I was going to give him what for, even
though I really like the guy, and we associate outside of work. Before I said anything though I noticed he looked a little unhinged, and then I
noticed his scrubs were drenched, and I mean literally soaked in blood. He was holding his old Walls canvas coat out at arms length, and it was ruined
with blood stain. It looked like he had a front row seat to the live screening of "Texas Chainsaw Massacre."
"What happened?!" I asked. "I worked a car wreck that happened on the highway right in front of me on the way to work." The story that followed
made me remember that most people really are good at heart, and that we get so caught up in the media sensationalization of the very few bad eggs, or
in my case, just over exposure by situation. We forget most people do have a working moral compass, and it leads them with authority. Take heart ATS.
It's bittersweet, but this is what happened.
My friend, we'll call him John, was travelling from his home on the outskirts of town. He has about a 20 mile trip to work, and 15 of it is on a
major US highway. He was passed by a pickup truck going way too fast. He guesses 120 mph or better. As the truck topped the hill the Texas wind, and
his excessive speed caused the rear of the truck to aeroplane. The truck cartwheeled 5 or 6 times, the guy flew out of the truck, and was rolled over
by the truck at least twice. My friend stopped to render aid, and was in uniform. Two other non-medical by-standers also stopped. John admitted that
had the other two not been there he would have probably just called 911, and waited. The guy had agonal respirations, but was obviously not going to
survive. (I won't get into the gore.) The other two men saw John, and immediately asked "What do you want us to do?" John directed them, and joined
in giving CPR, and some very basic 1st aid, admittedly for show, but the two other men were very moved to try to save this man even though to an
experienced eye it was too late. John stayed, and helped them, and encouraged them. One man was constantly holding back dry heaves because the scene
was beyond gruesome, and he was just a sheet rock hanger, and had never seen anything close to this before. The other a salesman, all three covered in
blood, and body fluids of a complete stranger in the middle of nowhere. All three could have easily kept driving, and no one would ever know any
different. These other two men, who never took an oath like my friend John, stayed and fought back nausea, panic, and sheer horror to help a stranger
even though the chances of it making a difference were nil. Why? because it was the right thing to do. John didn't even get the other men's names,
but if you ever read this guys: Well done! People wonder why Texans are so proud, and a little boastful. Well, there's a lot of good reason. We tend
to give a damn.