Doctors at the Ryder Trauma Center in Miami, who have been treating the “zombie” attack victim Ronald Poppa, is recovering and remarkably happy despite possibly being blind and horribly disfigured.
Poppo, a 65-year-old alcoholic homeless man was viciously, and now infamously, attacked by a man named Rudy Eugene while suspected of being high on drugs, back on May 26. In the attack Eugene chewed off most of Poppo’s face and gauged out one of his eyes as he laid helplessly on the side of Miami causeway.
“He has not said one thing that’s negative,” said Dr. Nicholas Namias, a trauma surgeon and Ryder co-director. “He’s really just sort of living in the moment.”
The Tuesday comments were the first that doctors treating Poppo have made about his condition since being admitted after the attack.
They described that aside from the attack to his face, Poppo had received two puncture wounds to the left side of his chest and had a broken rib. The chest wounds have raised questions that Poppo was struck by bullets that the Miami police officer Jose Ramirez fired at Eugene in order to stop the attack.
“It could have been an object. It could have been a bullet, but it’s not an issue anymore,” Namias said. “It’s nowhere near the worst of his problems.”
Dr. Namias went on to describe that the two holes seemed to connect, and no foreign body was left behind. He said the holes have now healed over.
“It could have happened,” said Armando Aguilar, president of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police. Ramirez “had to take swift action, and bullets have a mind of their own.”
Poppo was also treated for a short-term brain injury, much like what is seen with car-crash victims, and has recovered from that aswell. He was also being treated for infection unrelated to the facial injuries.
Despite everything he has been through Dr. Namias said, “He’s doing well.”
Namias was joined by the plastic surgeon, Dr. Wrood M. Kassira, who is working on reconstructing Poppo’s face and Dr. Jorge Delgado at the news conference were they also released photos of Poppo taken since the incident.