Xavier Magazine

Dr. Monica Flynn

Monica Flynn, M.D. | Bachelor of Science in nuclear medicine, 1984 | Medical director, Connersville Immediate Care, Fayette Memorial Hospita, Connersville, Ind.

A Life in Motion | Flynn fell in love with world travel at age 4 when she first visited relatives in Ireland. Now that she’s a doctor, her trips are often punctuated with unforeseen requests for medical advice and care. For instance, in one Thai village, word got out that an American doctor was in town, and she awoke to find a line of patients waiting outside her door. Her web site——touches on some of the highlights of her adventures, medical and otherwise, across four continents.

Flight Deferred | Growing up in Cincinnati, Flynn wanted to be an airline pilot. But she wasn’t ready to leave home, so she enrolled at the University. “That decision shaped my personality and my life,” she says. “My social life at Xavier was as important and as influential as the classes I took. The whole culture prepared me well for the unusual course my life has taken. I started in accounting, which didn’t last long, and ended up with a degree in nuclear medicine.”

The Spirit of Manresa | After graduation, Flynn attended medical school at Ohio State University. There, inspired by the impact of Xavier’s Manresa program on her personal life, Flynn helped develop an orientation program for the medical school. The program is now used as part of the medical school’s recruiting package.

On the Road | After completing her residency in family practice at Santa Monica Hospital/UCLA College of Medicine in California, Flynn spent a year backpacking through Ireland, Italy, Greece, Kenya, England, Wales, India, Nepal, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, China, and Japan.

September 11 | After several years in private practice, Flynn joined United Airlines as a flight surgeon in 1998. She was assigned to the recovery efforts for United Airlines flight 93, which crashed in Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001. “It wasn’t until later that I found out that the passengers had interfered with the terrorists and caused the plane to crash,” she says. “It was very humbling.” Last year, she returned to Pennsylvania to attend the memorial service at the site.

Slow Down | While working at the site, Flynn rented a black Mustang GT, inspiring the Pennsylvania State Police to give her the code name “Mustang Sally.”

On the Road Again | Flynn left United and returned to Cincinnati in October 2001 to be near her parents. She practiced family medicine for a year before joining Fayette Memorial Hospital in Indiana. Three times a week, she makes a two-hour roundtrip commute to Connersville, Ind., near Indianapolis.

The Road Ahead | At some point, Flynn hopes to return to her position as a flight surgeon. She also plans to resume the flying lessons she started in Santa Monica, and would someday like to have a family of her own. “But with or without that, I hope to do more travel and work in parts of the world where people are less fortunate,” she says.

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