OUT OF THE FIELDS
My Journey From Farmworker Boy To Pediatrician
Book Excerpt from the Inspiring Story of Ramon Resa, MD:
Excerpt #14 of 17
RAMON RESA LOSES HIS FAVORITE AUNT TO BREAST CANCER, HE MAKES THE DECISION TO BECOME A DOCTOR.
It’s toward the end of my first year at Santa Cruz and I don’t have any specific field I’m interested in, so I dabble in psychology. Debbie and I take a child development course together. I know I want to understand how to be a good father, even if I have no idea what career I’ll have.(Debbie was my first sweetheart — we met just weeks after I started Santa Cruz, and we’ve been married for more than 30 years now.)
Then a family crisis occurs that changes the course of my future. My Aunt Helen goes to see a doctor about a mass in her breast. He tells her she has breast cancer and will die without treatment. He also makes her feel that because she’s Mexican and poor, she doesn’t deserve decent medical care. He makes it obvious that he resents having to care for “her kind.”
She drives home, alone, with this news. Although she has appointments for radiation treatment, the doctor has treated her so badly that she decides she would rather die than be subjected to such behavior. She quits going to treatments and dies.
Helen was the nicest aunt I could have. I always felt welcome in her house, and her death makes me come to a decision about my major.