Star Advertiser 2013 09 01 Jorge Camara Obituary .pdf
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POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Sep 01, 2013
Jorge De Guzman Camara / 1950-2013
Altruism defined ophthalmologist's work
By Michael Tsai
Star-Advertiser / 2008
Dr. Jorge Camara, who died Wednesday, was an
accomplished pianist who used his musical
abilities to improve patient care. Camara
demonstrated his skills as patient Charnette Hoke
As a doctor, scholar, musician and humanitarian, Jorge Camara was distinguished not just by his considerable
talents and intellect but also by his resolve to use his abilities to help others.
Camara died Wednesday at Straub Clinic and Hospital in Honolulu at age 63. The circumstances of his death
were not disclosed.
"His work defined him," said brother Rickie Camara. "He was very caring and he loved his work. He spent his
whole life devoted to excellent patient care."
The eldest of 12 children, Jorge Camara was born in Ann Arbor, Mich., and raised in Manila.
Drawing inspiration from his father, Augusto, a cardiologist, Camara pursued a career in medicine after
graduating from the University of the Philippines in 1972. He was recognized as class valedictorian when he
earned his medical degree four years later.
He earned a surgical internship at the University of Texas-Houston and served his residency in ophthalmology
and later had a fellowship in ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Baylor College of Medicine.
In 1982, Camara moved to Hawaii, where he eventually opened his own practice.
Considered an innovator in his field, Camara published dozens of scholarly papers and spoke at numerous
conferences nationally and internationally. He is credited with having performed the first orbital surgery via
He was also recognized for discovering and developing a treatment for a previously unknown eyelid condition
prevalent in Asian populations.
Camara shared his expertise as an assistant professor at the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of
Medicine, and more broadly as a long-standing member (and past president) of the Aloha Medical Mission,
through which he delivered medical care and trained local doctors in impoverished areas of the world.
An accomplished pianist, Camara found a unique way to use his musical abilities to improve patient care. He is
credited with being the first surgeon to place a piano in the operating room to perform for patients (thereby
lowering their blood pressure, heart and respiratory rates). He even recorded a CD titled "Live from the
Operating Room." Camara also spearheaded the "Four Doctors and … " series of concerts to raise funds for
Aloha Medical Mission.
Over the course of his career, Camara was recognized with scores of awards and recognitions, including
Hawaii Medical Association Physician of the Year and the American Academy of Ophthalmology Outstanding
Humanitarian Award. However, no recognition meant more than the Bishop Charles A. Kekumano Noblesse
Oblige Award, which he received from Maryknoll School in 2003.
"‘Noblesse oblige' means ‘To whom much is given, much is expected,'" Rickie Camara said. "That meant a lot
to my brother. He always felt that he had been given so much in life that he had to give back to other people."
Camara is survived by his wife Binky; father Augusto; brothers Rickie, Philip, Miguel, Leo, Joey, Mando and
Martin; sisters Sylvia Singson, Crissie Santayana, Pinky Roxas and Lisa Camara.
Services will be held Monday at Star of the Sea Church. Visitation is scheduled for 3 to 4 p.m. with Mass and a
reception to follow. Donations in Camara's memory may be made to the Augusto Camara Scholarship
Fundԛ(William S. Richardson School of Law) or Aloha Medical Mission.
He was a great doctor, groundbreaking surgeon, and generous philanthropist.
on September 1,2013 | 06:15AM
A real hero!
on September 1,2013 | 07:29AM
Make you wish you met him in person to feel his curing mana, kindness, and love for his fellow human beings.
on September 1,2013 | 07:39AM
Any relation to Theresa and Kiwi Camara?
on September 1,2013 | 10:32AM
Dr. Camara was a true saint. Rip and rest in heave, sir.
on September 1,2013 | 11:19AM
Dr Camara was a true friend and professional in his field of work. May he be remembered to all of his good deeds!
on September 1,2013 | 11:46AM
I am so shocked and saddened; he was my family's eye doctor for several generations. I treasure the CDs of his piano music that he
gave to us over the eyes...not to mention the excellent eye care. Because of his diligence, I was able to avoid some serious retinal
damage. My prayers are with his family.
on September 1,2013 | 01:08PM
This is a sad loss for the many in the community and around the world. His legacy will forever be imprinted in our history and will
inspire all including future doctors in the Philippines and worldwide.
on September 1,2013 | 01:09PM
I trust he is in heaven with Augusto, his beloved son, playing his beautiful classical music to entertain all those in his presence. My
prayers are with Binkie and for all whose lives were touched by this special man.....
on September 1,2013 | 03:42PM
I'm so sorry to learn of Dr. Camara's death. He was a wonderfully decent man. Aloha to his family.
on September 1,2013 | 04:11PM