Local doctor recovering after assault in Uganda | TheUnion.com

Local doctor recovering after assault in Uganda

Dr. Scott Kellermann, right, with Dr. Jean Creassy, the board president of the Kellermann Foundation, at the Bwindi Community Hospital in Uganda. Kellermann is recovering aftering being mugged and knocked unconscious earlier this week in Kampala.
Submitted photo |

Local physician and missionary Dr. Scott Kellermann is on the mend after he was mugged and knocked unconscious Monday in Uganda.

“He’s perfectly fine,” said Rev. Christopher Seal, one of Kellermann’s close friends and the rector at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Nevada City. “He doesn’t feel sorry for himself, ever.”

Kellermann was walking to the Namirembe Guest House in Kampala, the capital city of Uganda, around 8 p.m. Monday when someone snuck up behind him and hit him over the head with an iron pipe. In a blog post forwarded by Seal, Kellermann wrote he was robbed of his wallet, cellphone and backpack, which contained his computer.

Kellermann was knocked out from the force of the blow, but was spotted by some people passing by, who alerted a night watchman.

He took Kellermann to the emergency room at Mengo Hospital, where Kellermann received between 30 and 40 stitches.

A head CT scan showed no significant injury, and although Kellermann has facial bruising, swelling and a few broken teeth, he appears to be in good spirits.

In his blog post, he wrote that his reflection in the mirror “will work well for Halloween” and that “I certainly did prove my mother correct in her assessment that I had a hard head.”

That Kellermann is already cracking jokes about the incident isn’t surprising, said his wife, Carol.

“He’s always got a lot of funny things to say. Even in dire circumstances, there he is with some humor,” Carol Kellermann said.

She said her husband left the U.S. for Uganda on Oct. 5.

He’s been doing some work at the Bwindi Community Hospital, which was founded by the couple in 2003 to provide healthcare to the Batwa pygmies, as well as to others living in the surrounding areas of the Kanungu District in Western Uganda.

Scott Kellermann had traveled back to Kampala earlier this week to greet a few arriving board members of the Kellermann Foundation, the nonprofit Scott and Carol founded in 2004 to help fund their work in Africa.

In his blog post, Kellermann wrote he considered traveling back to Nevada County after the attack, “but then the thieves would have won.”

“I obviously wish that I had not been assaulted but possessions are easily replaced, and damaged tissue will eventually heal,” he wrote.

Seal said that mindset is exactly what he expected from Kellermann, who has been doing medical missionary work for decades and has long understood some of the risks that come with traveling to under- developed countries.

“He’s very used to these kinds of things as a part of life and I keep telling people, don’t be concerned, because he’s not concerned,” Seal said.

That sentiment was clearly echoed in the last line of Kellermann’s post.

“It is truly a privilege to be here engaging in the work and helping the people and it’s great to be alive!!” he wrote.

Scott Kellermann is already back to work, checking out patients at the Bwindi Community Hospital. Carol Kellermann said she appreciates the outpouring of support from community members who have heard about the attack.

“I was so overwhelmed, and deeply touched,” she said. “I’ve never had that many people writing to me on Facebook. It’s just been amazing.”

To contact Staff Writer Emily Lavin, email elavin@theunion.com or call 530-477-4230.

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