B.C. aid worker dies in Cambodia
A Canadian humanitarian worker from Kamloops, B.C., has died from injuries sustained when he was robbed in Cambodia last week.
Jiri Zivny died at 5:15 p.m. local time Thursday at Phnom Penh's Calmette hospital, where he was being treated for severe head wounds, a doctor told his friend Evelyn Picklyk in an email.
Zivny was attacked after withdrawing money from a bank machine on Friday and left for dead on the street, his friend Monty Aldoff told CBC News on Tuesday.
Dr. Reid Sheftall, who was not personally treating Zivny but was looking in on the case, said he noticed Zivny's heart rate had been low earlier Thursday.
Turned life around to work with orphans
Zivny's friend Monty Aldoff told CBC Radio he wanted Zivny to be remembered as someone who turned his life around.
"He was one that went through many struggles in his life, but turned his life around and started doing worthwhile things in his life," Aldoff said.
Zivny was a member of a humanitarian mission that travelled to southeast Asia in mid-November, delivering medical supplies to orphans on behalf of the International Humanitarian Hope Society.
Most of the group returned to B.C. over Christmas. Zivny and another worker stayed on in Cambodia to work with the orphans for another month, members of the team told CBC.
Zivny's medical insurance had expired before the attack. News of his death came as Picklyk and others were trying to raise funds to bring him back to Canada for treatment.
Friends vow to continue charity work
As they try to deal with the tragic news, the group is now raising money to bring Zivny's body back to Canada,
"We are just, we are beside ourselves right now," said Aldoff.
But despite the horrific attack, the group still plans to continue working in South East Asia, he said.
"We believe our mission there is a worthwhile mission. For anyone who doesn't think so, they have to see the faces of these little children — the joy they get when we go to bring them gifts, and bring them food and medical supplies," said Aldoff.