A selfless doctor navigated Houston’s choppy waters in a canoe and on foot on Saturday in an effort to make his way to the hospital so he could perform an emergency surgery for a teen who faced a painful condition.
Dr. Stephen Kimmel jumped into action after receiving word that a 16-year-old boy named Jacob Terrazas desperately needed his help. Kimmel’s selfless act came just as his own home was beginning to flood during Hurricane Harvey.
But rather than hunker down or flee to safety, the doctor instead hopped in a car and tried to head to Clear Lake Regional Medical Center, KABC-TV reported.
Kimmel’s car couldn’t make it through, though, and he was forced to go back home. That’s when two firefighters got him in their truck and the three carried on toward the hospital, at one point abandoning the vehicle for a canoe.
After paddling along the way to the hospital, the doctor had to walk the final mile through deep waters in the middle of the night before finally making it to the medical center, putting his scrubs on and getting to work.
And it’s a good thing Kimmel made the sacrifice to help Terrazas, as the teen’s painful testicular torsion could have led to serious and permanent damage.
“Jacob was in such pain and was shaking and hardly able to talk when we got here, but everyone [at the hospital] is so helpful,” the teen’s mom, Yesenia Terrazas, said, according to the Miami Herald.
The physicians and staff at Clear Lake Regional Medical Center are doing whatever it takes to ensure patients are…
Kimmel later explained that he was simply doing what had to be done, proclaiming in a statement released through the hospital, “Sometimes you have to do whatever it takes. This young man’s life would have been changed for the worse forever if we hadn’t been able to perform surgery when we did.”
The surgery, which lasted an hour, was a success.
“In the end, it all turned out very well,” Kimmel said.