A top lung surgeon who came out of retirement to fight the pandemic died when he set himself on fire after giving Covid to his entire family, according to reports.
The tragic senior Russian Dr Nikolai Shinkarenko, 70, felt “guilty” about having made his relatives sick with the virus, heartbroken friends and colleagues said.
The veteran surgeon, with 42 years medical experience, had called fpr doctors to return to the frontline to tackle the coronavirus crisis.
“He could not sit at home knowing that he could help hundreds of people in need,” said Andrei Kalmykov, chief doctor of Mikhailovsk Central District Hospital in Volgograd.
“It’s true, his wife was against him going back to work.
“But she understood him too, because she is a doctor herself.”
As he helped Covid-19 patients, he got infected – and had to be admitted to his own hospital.
“He was immediately hospitalised in his own department,” said Dr Kalmykov.
“Nikolai decided that it was his fault that everyone got sick, but no one blamed him for this, neither his family, nor his colleagues, nobody,” said a close colleague.
“I spoke with his wife, Nelli.
“She is deeply shocked by what happened.
“According to her, no-one understood at all why Nikolai did this.”
According to reports, he drove to remote wasteland near Volgograd and stepped away from his car before emptying petrol over himself and striking a match, say reports.
A fitness fanatic before his illness, he had been into kettlebell lifting for many years and lived a healthy lifestyle.
After physically recovering from Covid-19, he suffered sleeping problems and was remorseful over his family’s infections.