Nightly News | September 20, 2012
>>> time now for our making a difference report tonight, it is about a man who has decided retirement can wait. he is a surgeon whose name is, of all things, dr. bone, and is about to do the work many are not willing to do. his story tonight, from rehema ellis.
>> reporter: lawrence bone is at a time in his life when he can focus on something other than x-rays, he has been a doctor for 35 years and the chairman in up state new york. but this 64-year-old surgeon pushed back all thoughts of retirement when he heard the army has great need for surgeons.
>> i said wow, i would be more than happy to join, but i'm too old. and they looked at me and said, oh, no, you're not.
>> reporter: the army says 75% of combat wounds involve broken bones and require the special skills of an orthopedic surgeon , he was the oldest to get a waiver because the military was eager to get him.
>> the practicing physician, that is the most challenging mission that we have in the recruiting commands. we are competing with the rest of the market place in these highly skilled physicians and surgeons.
>> reporter: patriotic pride and a father's gratitude motivated dr. bone to volunteer. military doctors patched up his son who would say was wounded in iraq years ago, his wife urged him to go.
>> she said you have to do it, something took care of your son, now you go take care of somebody else's.
>> reporter: his daughter, also a doctor, says she is concerned about her dad's decision to put himself in harm's way for three years, but she is not surprised.
>> this is not so much a sacrifice, but a duty he is willing to do.
>> i am 35 years into treating civilians, now i am very honored to be able to serve the military and our wounded warriors.
>> reporter: one man, extending his commitment to healing, all the way to a war zone . rehema ellis, nbc news, new york.