I don't blame the bicyclists for not stopping to help. It would be heroic to stop, but getting away and calling 911 is all that is morally required. Do you disagree? I would not even stop long enough to figure out who was the one that needed help. Now, if the bicyclists casually observed the scene and moved on, that would be wrong.
There's also now an answer to the question I had: Why was the victim naked? The attacker, Rudy Eugene "pulls Poppo from the shade, strips off his pants and pummels him. He hunches over Poppo and appears to lie on top of him."
And here's an article about Poppo, whose sister thought he'd died years ago.
“I tried to reach him, and I just thought he killed himself,” she said. "We really thought he was no longer on this Earth."So here was this poor, lost man. Before the attack, the word "faceless" could have been used figuratively to describe him. Now, having literally lost his face, he is famous. His face, in old photographs, is on the front page of the newspapers. What strange paradoxes. Lying in the street, with no one to care about him, he was suddenly "pull[ed]... from the shade" and into the bright light. He suffered a horrible attack, but before the attack, no one cared about him or gave him any thought at all. Now, everyone cares intensely about him. We want to know how he came to be lying there that day, how he suffered, whether he can be saved. The doctors and the nurses will lavish medical care upon him.
He lost nearly 80% of his face on Saturday when Rudy Eugene, 31, chomped away at his nose, eyes and face. He also lost one eye when it was gouged out, police said.The beard was not eaten. The crazed cannibal maintained possession of the sane person's distaste for hair? Perhaps when Poppo wandered the streets, that beard marked him as a homeless man, and outsider. And then the beard preserved a part of his face.
“He had his face eaten down to his goatee,” said Sgt. Armando Aguilar, president of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police. “The forehead was just bone. No nose, no mouth.”
Antoinette remembered her sibling as “a very intelligent boy.”Stuyvesant isn't a private school, so it's hard to make sense of what the sister said. Maybe just that the place was exclusive. You have to do well on a difficult test to get in.
“My mother always sent him to private schools, and I really don’t understand what happened,” Antoinette said....
He was remembered as a “nice guy” by his fellow classmates at Stuyvesant High School, a prestigious city school from which he graduated in 1964.
“The sad reality is there are many brilliant people who become schizophrenic and end up on the streets,” said a Stuyvesant classmate, Felix Freshwater, who became a pioneering plastic surgeon in Miami.Very sad. I hope it's some consolation to the poor man that, after all these years, people do care about him. Here are some more details about medical treatment. The injuries are not life threatening, but the human mouth is full of germs, so the worst danger is infection:
Now 65, Poppo used to sleep on a cardboard box across the street from the crime scene, often listening to a small radio, a homeless man named Andrew told the Daily News.
“He didn’t mess with anyone, and he seemed like a very educated man,” Andrew said.
[R]ebuilding of Poppo's face would happen in stages after doctors try to keep his wounds clean, salvage viable tissue and determine a plan for skin grafts. Protecting his remaining eye and maintaining an airway are priorities.They have a man who hasn't coped with ordinary life, but he had his survival-level life on the streets for 30 years. In that, he's not much like the chimpanzee victim, abruptly thrown from ordinary life into abnormal life.
To keep the wounds clean, doctors use grafts of the patient's skin, cadaver skin or synthetic skin to cover the exposed bone or cartilage, said Dr. Blane Shatkin, a plastic surgeon and director of the wound healing center at Memorial Hospital Pembroke in South Florida....
"You would not just take this guy to the OR for a face transplant — you really have to go in a staged fashion. You save what you can and use what you have available first, don't burn any bridges and move forward slowly," Shatkin said. "And you have to see what he wants."
Psychological care is important to the recovery, and patients need to participate in the decision-making process, said Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, a surgeon at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. He performed a facial transplant on a Connecticut woman who was mauled by a friend's pet chimpanzee in 2009.
"I think the patient has to be able to cope with the injury and the trauma and needs to figure out what has happened. It often takes them weeks to understand what has happened," Pomahac said.