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Old 04-14-2019, 07:55 AM
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Default Fort Lauderdale WM missionary doctor, 58 survives shooting for $11, phone in Haiti by 3


South Florida missionary doctor survives shooting in Haiti
Wednesday, April 10th 2019

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. (CBS12) — A missionary doctor from Fort Lauderdale is recovering at Delray Medical Center.

Dr. Douglas Burbella was shot three times while on a missionary trip in Haiti on April 4, and he feels it’s a miracle he’s still alive.

Burbella has been to Haiti about 20 times. But this latest trip was different because he nearly lost his life.

“They chased us on foot, and they opened fire on us, so we had a barrage of, a hailstorm of bullets coming at us,” he said.

Burbella is a missionary doctor with an organization called Living Waters. He was in Haiti with seven others as part of a missionary team, heading to a small town about an eight-hour drive from Port Au Prince, when they came across a roadblock with burning tires in the road.

They were taking supplies to a missionary school.

“I could see a scooter coming up and the driver of the scooter and the passenger each had a machine gun,” Burbella said while sitting in a wheelchair at Delray Medical Center.

He was shot three times: in the shoulder, in the spine, and in the cheek.

His wife showed us the bullet doctors removed from his face.

Burbella says he died at that moment on that two-lane road in Haiti.

“My spirit was above my body looking down at myself," he said. "I said, 'God.' I said, 'I got a wife and son that I love and they need me,'”

Moments later, Burbella says his spirit returned to his body and he came back to life.

“Three guys came up to the window to finish me off and they all pointed their guns at the window and they were aiming down the barrel, squinting and I said I gotta play possum and fast,” he said.

The 58-year-old doctor says he faked that he was dead and laid still, then he says a mystery person came up to the pickup he was in and got the gunmen to back off.

“A man appeared from nowhere and put his hand up and said, 'No,' pushed the man back,” he said.

Burbella says he owes his life to that individual, whom he calls an angel, who saved his life and the lives of the seven others with him.

Although the three gunmen did rob him, his life was spared.

“They got $11 dollars out of my wallet, took my cell phone, and just treated me like a piece of garbage and then they just left me,”
Burbella said.

Burbella says he will undergo surgery at Delray Medical Center Thursday to remove the bullet lodged in his spine.


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