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November 4, 2010

Ambulance makes stop to let sick man vote in Pa.

By Doug Shimell and Dan Stamm

HAVERTOWN, Pa. — A Haverford Township man wasn't about to let being confined to a stretcher prevent him from voting.

Dr. Charles Gorby was so determined to cast his ballot that he wasn't about to let a two-week hospital stay get in the way.

The 83-year-old medical doctor had not missed voting in an election in 62 years.

As he was headed home from Lankenau Hospital where he'd been undergoing dialysis treatment, Gorby asked the Wissinoming Ambulance crew if they'd stop by the Brookline Fire House so he could vote.

The firehouse is just a block from Gorby's home so the ambulance crew agreed, as long as they wouldn't have to wait for Gorby to vote.

"My legs were sticking out under the curtain and, frankly, I didn't care if anyone saw how I voted," Gorby said frankly. "If anyone wants to know, just ask me."

The hardest part for Gorby was pushing the "cast vote" button. But the WWII veteran got it done.

"The goal is to get the ball across that line," Gorby said. "And the details of how you do it aren't important. Just get it over there. And that's how I voted — there's the machine, there's the selection...Go get it!"

Part of the reason Gorby voted was so that he could voice his concerns with the direction of the country.

"I promised myself if you don't vote, you keep your mouth shut until the next election," he said. "And when you vote, you can complain. If you don't vote, you have nothing to say."

Gorby's wife had something to say when he explained why he was late gettting home from the hospital.

"I just laughed and said, 'only you could get away with that,' " said Louise with a chuckle.

Republished with permission from