When Eton native Ruthie Crider visited Vancouver earlier this year to record her part in a television episode of “Untold Stories of the ER,” the actors she worked with had to learn to mimic her Southern accent to make the setting seem authentic.
“They immediately said, ‘Oh my gosh, you have a really strong Southern accent,’” Crider said. “Where we’re from in the South, nobody thinks that. But other actors and actresses need to sound like she (the doctor she portrays in ‘Untold Stories’) does. They said the hardest accent to replicate is the Southern accent, so I thought that was sort of funny.”
“Untold Stories of the ER” is a docudrama series featuring real stories. The episode featuring Crider is scheduled to air first on the Discovery Fit & Health channel today at 9 p.m. and again Nov. 2 at 9 p.m. on the Teaching and Learning Channel (TLC).
Crider, who now lives in Statesboro with her husband Bill and sons Billy, 5, and Bozeman, 3, is an emergency room doctor at East Georgia Regional Hospital with Georgia Emergency Associates. Earlier this year, Crider said, she received what appeared to be a mass mailing from the show asking for doctors’ best ER stories. Crider said she’d watched the show many times and had 10 years’ experience in the ER, so she had an idea of what kinds of stories were usually featured.
“I replied and submitted a story to the producer ... and immediately got a response that they liked the story and wanted to interview me,” Crider said. “That was in May of this past year.”
Crider said it happened so quickly that her husband at first thought it might be a scam. Soon, though, a crew was in Statesboro interviewing her. She made the cut in June, and the next month, she and her parents, Murray County residents Charles and Kate Pannell, were flying up to Canada for the show’s filming.
In the episode, Crider has her hands full when two young female patients are admitted to the ER at nearly the same time, apparently experiencing seizures. A series of dilemmas from understaffing to malfunctioning equipment complicate Crider’s efforts to treat her patients, and the story has some unexpected twists before she reaches her diagnoses.
A few of the details have been changed to make sure the patients’ privacy is protected, but Crider said the story as told on the show is basically the same way she experienced it in real life. She said she memorized a script and stayed in Vancouver two days shooting the episode on the show’s set — a closed hospital.
Crider said she enjoyed the show and getting a chance to work with professional actors.
She graduated from Murray County High School in 1995, from the University of Georgia in 1999 and received her medical doctorate from Mercer University School of Medicine in 2003. She is a member of the Medical Association of Georgia and the Ogeechee River Medical Society. She is also an associate professor in emergency medicine at Mercer University and is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine.
Crider is a nationally board certified emergency room physician. Her father is a senior United States District Court judge for the Northern District of Georgia. “Untold Stories” is now in its eighth season.