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IN MEMORIAM

Dominador “Doming” Ong, MD

by Rise Faith Espina-Dajao, M.D.
 

Below is a tribute to Doming that I wrote on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of CIM and which was printed in the special anniversary book.  I think it encapsulates his personality and his character to a T and now that he is physically absent from our lives, I hope it will always remind you of how beloved he was and how much he contributed to the success of ASOCIMAI.  He will be forever missed.  Have fun up there, ‘Ming!  May you continue to look over us with love and concern.
 

            “Hey!  Come back here, the meeting is not over!”  The Voice stops us in our tracks and we sheepishly get back to our places like children caught with our hands in the cookie jar.  The voice belongs to none other than El Presidente, Dr. Dominador Ong of the fabled class of 1972, Doming for short.  The year after the above incident, he assigned me to the thankless job of CME Coordinator, just to make sure I could not escape from any further meetings! 

            Doming has been a marvel.  He was elected President twenty-some years ago – no one even remembers exactly when - and he has kept this organization together, as a combination of father-figure and benevolent dictator.  After all, it is no easy task to take care of very needy physicians!  But he did it, and he did it with flair.  I know of no one else who could have done the job as well as he did.  He is not without his imperfections: when chairing a meeting, Robert’s Rules of Order often goes by the wayside, he can be bull-headed at times and he can often be impetuous.  But he has taken the heat many a time for mistakes made by others and has shown a passion and a dedication to the organization which shows no bounds.  He has limitless patience for those he calls “mga badlungon!” and has been willing to accept change (but not without much prodding).  He has also answered the call even for the national organization of Filipino physicians in the US when he agreed to serve as Executive Director of the Association of Philippine Physicians in America and did an outstanding job for them.

            He came to the US in 1973 and obtained a residency in Internal Medicine – Cardiology from the Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  He has not practiced his specialty much and has instead dedicated his career to hospital medicine and to the care of the indigent patients in the health clinics in Philadelphia.  He is generous to a fault – toward his family and friends – and even to the children of friends, who he considers his own.  He is an avowed bachelor and is a staunch defender of the state of single-blessedness.  He is an avid shopaholic (in dire need of psychiatric help for this, according to my husband, Roger) and collector of all things beautiful.  He has worked tirelessly for the benefit of the association and more recently for the benefit of our alma mater, the Cebu Institute of Medicine. 

            We doff our hats to Doming, excellent physician, outstanding President, beloved classmate and friend.  May his tribe increase!
 

Such a loss for us all.  Rest in eternal peace my friend, and in the timeless words of the Irish blessing:

                                    “May the road rise up to meet you,

                                    May the wind be always at your back.

                                    May the sun shine warm upon your face

                                    And the rains fall soft upon your fields;

                                    And until we meet again

                                    May God hold you in the palm of His Hand.”

The 2022 ASOCIMAI Reunion is Coming!

Date: July 6 - 10, 2022

Location: Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, NV

A Letter from our Executive Director -
Dr. Rise Faith Espina Dajao

April 10, 2020

Dear fellow alumni,

I hope that by now you have received Dr. Jerry Murillo’s letter announcing my appointment as the Executive Director upon Doming’s sudden and untimely death. Doming was the heart of ASOCIMAI and kept this association going through good times and bad. I know that he would have wanted to have his beloved friends and relatives surrounding him when he passed but that was not to be. That really hurt us all. Please continue to pray for his eternal and peaceful repose. Some have asked us what happened after his death: He was cremated and his ashes are with his niece in New Jersey. He will be brought home to Leyte to rest beside his beloved sister.

I accept this appointment with humility and with great trepidation. I have huge shoes to fill and I need all your help to accomplish this task. 2020 has been a trying year for us all but in the midst of all the trials and sorrows, we have had some good things happen. Roger and I have finally retired (which is one reason I was able to accept this position) and are now living in Philadelphia to be closer to our children and grandchildren and we now have new professions: babysitter and school bus driver! Much different but really enjoyable!

Our next reunion will be at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas from JULY 6-10, 2022. Let’s make this truly GRAND!

We are requesting everyone to send in their membership fees for the years 2020 and 2021 if at all possible. It is $100/year per person. Our coffers are really down right now so we need some help. Please send your checks to:

                                            DR. RONALD POBLETE
                                            777 RIFLE CAMP ROAD
                                            WOODLAND PARK, NJ 07424

Thank you for your confidence in me. My email address, phone number and physical address have been added to this message. Please do not hesitate to call me if you have any questions, suggestions or critiques. I will always be available to you at any time. God bless us all.

Sincerely,

RISE FAITH ESPINA DAJAO, MD
risefaith@yahoo.com
757-753-9237
3 N Columbus Blvd MD 304 
Philadelphia, PA 19106

 A Letter from the President

Dear Alumni:

By now, you must have heard that our beloved Executive Director, Dr. Dominador Ong passed away unexpectedly. The ASOCIMAI Board unanimously approved the appointment of Dr. Rise Faith Espina-Dajao as the new Executive Director. Please give her all your support and encouragement.

The pandemic has really turned our reunion schedule upside down.  I’m sure everyone is trying to recover from cabin fever and anxious to travel once we are allowed to. Las Vegas Cesar’s Palace was kind enough to give us a postponement of our reunion to July 6-10, 2022 without penalty. In addition, the room rate was locked into the original 2019 pre-pandemic negotiated rate of $129/night for July 6 & 7 and $169/night for July 8 & 9. A daily resort fee of $32/room is added to the daily room rate. We will be exempt from the “to-be-expected” room rate increases once Las Vegas fully opens up for business.  My hope is that everyone will be vaccinated come July 2022.

After some discussion, the ASOCIMAI Board agreed to hold a memorial mass for all alumni that we have lost to COVID as well as other causes. This pandemic has been a difficult one and we have been unable to express our grief collectively, so this memorial mass during the reunion would be a timely way to get together and remember those that we lost. Please send the names of the alumni or their spouses who have passed away during this time of pandemic to Dr. Cora Sanchez, email dancorvic@msn.com. The consensus was to hold the mass on Friday, July 8, 2022 at 5PM. We will use a conference room in the hotel to hold the mass.

Lastly, please send your membership dues to our Treasurer, Dr. Ronald Poblete. The ASOCIMAI business address is 14416 Maple Ridge Court, Baldwin, Maryland 21013. Since we did not have a reunion in 2020 and will not have one in 2021, our coffers are empty. Your dues will sustain our organization through these lean times. Please help!

Thank you for your support. It is members like you that keep the ASOCIMAI mission alive.

Keep the faith,

Dr. Jerry Murillo
President

Mail your Registration Form to 

Dr. Ronald Poblete

777 Rifle Camp Road

Woodland Park, NJ 07424

Mail your Registration Form to:

Dr. Ronald L. Poblete
777 Rifle Camp Road
Woodland Park, NJ 07424