John Kennedy & Flip Mullen
Born in Dublin and educated at Ireland’s Royal College of Surgeons, orthopedic surgeon Dr. John Kennedy met Flip Mullen, a retired NYPD and FDNY officer, four years ago at Irish America’s Top 100 awards dinner. Both were being honored for their work helping others: Kennedy for performing orthopedic surgeries free of charge in Santo Domingo, Mullen for his work with the Wounded Warrior Project, an organization that provides programs and assistance to wounded veterans and their families. The two met and began to talk, and out of their conversation a new partnership was born.
Mullen and other members of the Wounded Warrior Project counsel injured soldiers to consult Dr. Kennedy, a surgeon at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery, for a second opinion. In turn, Dr. Kennedy and his associate, Dr. Austin Fragomen, meet with the wounded soldiers, look at their injuries, and have in certain cases performed surgeries that have saved soldiers from amputation. Mullen and his wife Rita also house the soldiers and their families while in New York. With the increased survival rate from battlefield injuries, the collaboration of Mullen and Dr. Kennedy is ever more important to wounded veterans.