HAGERSTOWN, Md. (DC News Now) — A Cuban refugee fled oppression and made his way to Maryland to practice medicine. He not only fled oppression

Colombia was Dr. Julio Menocal’s first destination after fleeing Cuban oppression. However, upon getting to the U.S. with his medical degree in hand, he landed a residency at Georgetown University Hospital.

“We were on the run for many, many years to many different countries,” Menocal said. “I guess what you are running away from is communism and the devastating effects it has on a society.”

Now with a medical practice in both Hagerstown and Frederick, Menocal is most welcoming to the community.

“A lot of the older patients have either mental incapacities or they have psychiatric illnesses or addictions and we provide services to them all,” he said.

Lala Suarez Mooney is a close family friend who says a patient’s financial means is never a consideration to him.

“He will see you totally for free or only charge you what you can pay,” Mooney said. “He’s going to help you no matter what.”

We don’t turn anybody away, Menocal said.

“We want to take care of the people that are forgotten about in our society,” he said.

Mooney said Menocal’s “big heart” is rooted in his ethnic heritage.

“The Cuban way of thinking for doctors is different,” Mooney said. “You are God’s representative and you want to serve the person.”

Menocal has received numerous citations for his community service and has been chosen as the president of the Medical Society of Physicians in Frederick.