The volunteer medics continue to select and treat extraordinary cases of medical need. Featured patients include Ruth & Marina – two 5-year-old burns victims who become best friends on the ship, Miracle – a young boy with disfigured hands who longs to play drums like his father, and Innocent – a local barber who has transformational surgery to remove multiple tumours from his face and body, only to suffer a near-fatal setback.

Crew & Patient Bios

Meet the Mercy Ships volunteers and their patients featured in Episode 2 of The Surgery Ship.

Dr. Lindsay Sherriff
Deputy  Chief Medical Officer/Hospital Physician – Australia

Dr. Lindsay Sherriff and his wife Dianne met whilst studying medicine at university in Adelaide, South Australia. Settling in a small town, they practiced as Rural Family Medicine Practitioners, combining anaesthetics and obstetrics with general physician and paediatrics work.

After 25 years in private practice, they believed it was the right time to follow a long-term desire to use their medical skills abroad. They feel privileged to take up this work with Mercy Ships.

Dr. Brian and Jamie Barki
Anaesthesia Supervisor and Ward Administrative Assistant – USA

Brian and Jamie Barki live full-time on board with their son BJ and daughters Maya and Hanna. Serving as Anaesthesia Supervisor and Ward Administrative Assistant respectively, Brian and Jamie and their kids are just one of many families who call the Africa Mercy home.

Ruth and Marina
Plastic patients, 5

For five-year-old burn victims Ruth and Marina, months of rehab following surgery made them strong. But even stronger was the bond that formed between them, their healing giggles heard echoing around the dock. Friendship – it’s just one of the perks of spending time on board the Africa Mercy.

Dr. Tertius Venter
Plastic Surgeon – South Africa

Ten years ago Dr. Tertius Venter made the decision to close his private practice in South Africa to become a volunteer surgeon for Mercy Ships. Since then he has dedicated his life to providing life-changing plastics and reconstructive surgery for the poorest of the poor in West Africa.

Tertius first encountered Mercy Ships in 2000 when the previous Mercy Ship Anastasis docked in South Africa. He realised that his skills and training as a plastic surgeon could make an incredible difference to the lives of those who would otherwise have no access to surgical care.

Plastics patient, 4

When Miracle was 14 months old, he went into the kitchen looking for his mother and plunged his hands into a pot of boiling water. Over time, the skin on Miracle’s hands contracted more and more, making it impossible for him to move his fingers. When Mercy Ships arrived in Benin, he and his mum travelled to the screening centre.