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Doctor roller skates into retirement after 40 years of work

‘It made me happy to see him happy,’ daughter says

Olivia Hebert
Los Angeles
Wednesday 17 January 2024 21:28 GMT
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A Texas doctor celebrated his retirement by rollerskating during his final shift in the emergency room.

In a viral TikTok video, Dr Phil Masterson roller skated into retirement after 40 years of work, rocking a “retired” sash gifted to him by his staff at a free-standing ER near Dallas.

As the doctor celebrated his retirement and skated to songs such as “Hit The Road Jack,” his daughter Nicole Masterson (@chanelandcoke) reportedly recorded a video of the fun moment and posted it to TikTok. The video has since received over 1.7 million views. “It made me happy to see him happy,” she said.

Dr Masterson - who will be turning 70 this year - says his “big move” back in the day used to be the “Russian Roulette,” and showed CNN a picture of him in his 20s shows him crouched with his arms folded as he kicked in the air. But he admitted that he can’t bust that move anymore, explaining to the outlet, “My knees won’t allow me to do that any longer.”

On his final shift, Dr Masterson, who has been skating since he was a teenager growing up in late 1970s Detroit, surprised his co-workers with his skating skills. “I’ve always had a thought: ‘You know when I retire, I want to do something crazy,’” the doctor said. “They were flabbergasted.”

Before he retired, the doctor had reportedly joked with his staff that he planned on streaking through the halls in nothing but a cowboy hat and some matching boots. At the time, his staff wasn’t sure whether or not he was going to go through with it. “Obviously, that was kind of extreme,” he admitted to Fox.

It wasn’t until he spoke to a close friend and fellow retiree that he was struck with the idea to rollerskate, recalling: “I’m a great rollerskater, so I said, ‘I think I’ll do that.’”

Back in medical school, the doctor said that skating multiple times a week was a way he used to alleviate stress. He explained, “It was a tremendous source of stress relief for me.”

Dr Masterson has been overwhelmed by the positive response to the video. “I’m quite surprised with the response it’s had since she posted it on TikTok,” he said. “I think [the video] shows my light and how much fun I was having and how happy I was to be retiring.”

The doctor reportedly plans on moving to Spain for one year with his wife, Sherry, who also retired from practising medicine the previous week. He added to the outlet that beyond immersing himself in Spanish culture, he plans on picking up old hobbies he’s neglected such as playing the trumpet and studying art. He said, “I’m looking forward to that.”

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