Local News

UAB Doctor dies after allegedly being assaulted in Mexico

BIRMINGHAM, Ala (WIAT) -- - A North Carolina man is speaking out after his friend, a UAB doctor, was allegedly attacked in Mexico and died from his injuries.

Dr. William O'Byrne was an anesthesiologist at UAB.

Jason Hall tells CBS 42 that he’s hearing a lot of theories.

Hall said Dr. O’Byrne, who went by Bill, was in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico last week.

He went missing and later turned up at a hospital in Mexico before being flown back to UAB  where he passed away.

"Shock. Disbelief. It was hard to sort of comprehend that something like this could happen to someone I know so it was pretty devastating," said Hall.

Jason Hall has known anesthesiologist Dr. William O'Byrne for about 7 years.

Hall said his friend was on vacation with another group, and became separated. When he was finally located, he was in a hospital room—on a ventilator.

From there O'Byrne was flown back to UAB to get better medical care, but did not make it.

The Jefferson County coroner’s office is not working this case because it’s out of their jurisdiction, but did confirm that a William O'Byrne died Wednesday at UAB.

Jason said Bill taught students at UAB school of medicine and left an impression on everyone.

"He always exemplified the best humanistic characters of a physician and I think trying to emulate that as much as possible is what I would like to do to honor his memory," said Hall.

But in the meantime, he wants answers.

"Hopefully the appropriate authorities will be able to work with Mexican government and other appropriate jurisdictions to figure out what happened," said Hall.

CBS 42 News reached out to the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Mexico.

The Department of State couldn't confirm if they were investigating this.

We’re still waiting to hear back from the U.S. Embassy in Mexico.


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