Teacher’s Previous Job – Mr. Rak


Eva Kynaston and Kiki Majerac

What was an interesting previous job before teaching? 

I worked for a few years at UPMC presbyterian down in Oakland, and I did patient transport, which is the people who push patients in the stretchers or the beds when the patients have to get tests done. I did that five days a week after my classes in college.


What was it like? 

It was a lot of walking, and you met a bunch of interesting people. One of the weird parts about it was that when someone died in the hospital, you had to be the one who had to transport the body to the morgue. You would get the call that you had to pick up a patient from a location and take them to the morgue, which obviously meant that they were dead. You had a cart that was covered so you couldn’t tell what it was, and you had to wheel them down to the freezer area under the building. You had to check the tag on the body, sign them into a log book, move them off the stretcher they were on and onto a new stretcher, and then slide them into the freezer.


Do you have any memorable stories to tell about it?

One time I got called to the operating room to take a patient to the morgue, but when I got there I couldn’t find the cart with the body on it and I was stuck looking around until one of the nurses asked if I was there for the morgue call, and I said yes, and then she pointed to a bag. It was someone’s amputated foot. So, I had to take someone’s amputated foot down to the morgue. 


How was that job different from teaching?

A lot different in a lot of ways. I don’t deal with dead bodies here. But, that job was just non-stop walking. I would walk like six miles in a shift. This is a lot different because I’m in one spot all day. I see the same people all day, instead of this constant revolving door of like new people, new patients.