VALLEY CITY, IL – 24 year-old medical student Yulu Zwiti was known for his academic focus and dedication. That’s why when classmates and other patrons of the 12th Avenue Starbucks near the Western Illinois State Medical School (WISMS) saw him pouring over his Pathology notes hour after hour at the back table, no one thought much of it. That is, until 3 days went by and an observant night cleaning crew member noticed that he didn’t blink much.
Gus Yerdinger spotted what many of Zwiti’s fellow medical classmates had missed.
“I’m no doctor, but he definitely looked messed up,” said Mr. Yerdinger. “I feel bad for the kid.”
Starbucks Corporation has distanced itself from the incident, brushing off speculation about caffeine intoxication and indifferent staff.
“It was an understandable mistake. We have a lot of these med students come in…they buy $3 dollars worth of coffee, spread out a dozen textbooks with disgusting illustrations of genitals and stuff at a table intended for 6 people, use the free WiFi, and they camp out for 78 hours,” said Starbucks barista Julie Thock.
While classmates may not have recognized a vegetative state in the glazed stare of MS2 Zwiti, his unblinking resolve inspired them.
“To walk by him day after day and see how he never quit…it just made me feel really bad about how I’ve been slacking off on Cell Biology; I told myself I’d try harder. Later, when I found out he was in a coma, I felt a lot better about myself,” said first year student Samantha Beckins.
This young life interrupted by illness so suddenly has left many students shaken and confused.
“I studied beside him for several hours one of those days. He didn’t say anything, so I just assumed he was in the zone. Right now, I’m totally trying to process it all…like class rank and stuff. I mean, he was one of the top students in our class, and now that spot’s open.” said Zachary Murcher.
As ICU doctors and neurologists try to piece the odd illness together in the neuro-critical care unit, his presence in the medical school will definitely be missed by many.
“I don’t know how I’m going to get through this next block without his lecture notes,” said fellow MS2 Brian O’larkin, “It kind of makes me angry.”
A school fundraiser for Zwiti was held late last week, but most students were unable to attend due to study constraints caused by an exam on Human Ethics and Compassion scheduled for the following day. As a gesture of remembrance, the 12th Ave Starbucks has named a new espresso drink, the Zwituccino, and reserved his table for other students of the Western Illinois State Medical School.
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