Alabama neurosurgeon Dr. Zenko Hrynkiw, 62, who is being widely praised for trekking six miles in snow to perform life-saving brain surgery on a man who only had a 10 percent chance of living said the patient's survival is a "miraculous event" and his life is now in "the Lord's hands."
Speaking with reporters at a press conference held at Trinity Medical Center Thursday, Hrynkiw explained that he was aware of the dire condition of the patient when he decided to make the six-mile trek on foot Thursday because he had been communicating with hospital staff.
"I saw the CT scans. They texted me the image and this man's gonna die. He had a 90 percent chance of death. And the nurses and the ER physician who also called me while I was walking was telling me he was deteriorated, went into unconsciousness and he was dying," said Hrynkiw in a video of the press conference posted to al.com.
"If he didn't have surgery he would be dead and it's not gonna happen on my shift," he added with touch of defiance.
He said thankfully when he got to the hospital everything was ready for him to perform the life-saving surgery and he simply went to work on the patient.
"A soon as we got into the doors the operating room was ready, the patient was asleep and this patient had a miraculous event – he lived and he's still alive and that's in the Lord's hands. Somehow he's gonna make it, so it was kind of a good day," said Hrynkiw.
The 62-year-old doctor who describes himself as an avid walker said the trek to the hospital was also a bit of an adventure after a rare mix of ice and snow shut down most of Alabama on Tuesday.
"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," said the neurosurgeon who noted that he assisted people who were in cars that were stuck in the snow.
At one point he also stopped to warm up in a stranded ambulance.
When asked by a reporter why he thought what he did was such a big story, he replied: "It's not. I don't understand it."