• Blue Ridge Ortho

New hip allows patient to resume 49,802-mile quest


Once an avid runner, John Schreifels’ pace has recently slowed to a walk, but he won’t let that stop him from reaching his goal of 49,802 miles — the equivalent of two trips around the Earth. He’s down to his last 10,000 miles.


In March 2020, after already making one complete lap around the Earth (and closing in on the halfway mark of his second lap), he suffered a broken hip from a serious fall from a ladder. He worried he may never make it another mile.


Fortunately, he came directly to Blue Ridge Orthopaedics, where Dr. James Ramser was able to quickly diagnose his injury and schedule him for hip replacement surgery. John’s wife Diane was already a patient of Dr. Ramser, so he already knew he’d receive excellent care.


Within two days of his fall, John had a new hip, and by six weeks, he was given the green light by Dr. Ramser to continue his quest — but not as a runner. Remarkably, walking a distance of 8+ miles a day, he reached the halfway mark of his second lap on Thanksgiving Day.


Equally as impressive as John’s sense of determination is his philanthropic nature. As a chemistry professor at George Mason University, he has been able to raise tens of thousands of dollars in pledges — enough to establish a permanent $1,000 annual scholarship for chemistry students.


If John is able to keep up his current pace, he should be on track to complete his second lap around the Earth by the end of 2024.

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