Country Doctor Relies on Religious Faith During Assault

She's a country doctor who was just trying to do the right thing. But when she pulled over to help three stranded motorists, she became a victim of crime. Dr. Roseanne Cook was pistol-whipped, stuffed in the trunk of her car, and shot at. She was essentially left for dead on a lonely Wilcox County highway. But amazingly, she lived and she credits her strong faith for seeing her through.

She was making house calls, something doctors these days rarely do. But Dr. Cook is an exception. She's always playing the good samaritan. That's what she was trying to do Friday morning, but the people she stopped to help had something else on their minds.

At the Pine Apple Health Clinic, patients bring gifts for the doctor who they say is always there for them. "You know, she don't never turn us down," says Dora Thompson who brought in two of her children for a check up. They talked about that horrible morning. "That was not good what they did because, like I said, she's always there for us and she always shows her love for us."

It happened on Highway 10. When Dr. Cook saw three men standing next to a car with its hood up and its lights flashing, she pulled over and got out her jumper cables. "We actually jumped their car and as I was getting into my car to leave, the fellow with the gun said 'what do I owe you?' says Cook. "I said nothing, merry Christmas! And that's when he hit me in the side of the head and drove the car into the wooded area."

Cook says the men must have knocked her out because she doesn't remember being stuffed into the trunk of her car. But she does recall waking up to the sound of a gun shot. "I felt this thing go across (my face)." The bullet had grazed her cheek, but she was ok.

And it all happened because she was trying to help someone else. That comes natural to Cook. You see, she's not just a doctor. She's also a catholic nun. She says the Lord was protecting her that morning. She was calm through it all, even as she fought her way through her car's back seat to freedom. She says she knows no matter what happens, she is part of a larger plan.

Wilcox County sheriff's deputies arrested two of the three suspects, thanks to descriptions from other motorists who had passed them on the highway. A third suspect may also be arrested in the days to come.