Joseph Judson McNamara, M.D.

Posted On April 1st, 2012 -

J. JUDSON MCNAMARA, M.D.

Died March 11, 2012 at the age of 75, after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. An avid fisherman, collector, storyteller and physician with an intrepid spirit for adventure, Jud touched the lives
of many through his dedicated work as a surgeon, researcher, educator, friend and beloved family member.

Jud was raised in Redondo Beach, California, where he spent his boyhood days fishing and diving for abalone and lobster. He attended Stanford University and Washington University School of Medicine and earned his M.D. in 1961 (magna cum laude). He completed his internship and residency at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital and furthered his training with a cardiovascular fellowship at Baylor University Medical Center. Shortly after he was drafted to the Army and served a tour in Vietnam as a trauma surgeon in a MASH unit. He then moved his family to Hawaii where he established his medical practice and remained for the rest of his career.

Jud joined the University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine in 1970 and was appointed chairman of the surgery department in 1991. “Dr. Mac”, as he was called, was widely recognized for his achievements in thoracic surgery and cardiovascular research. He prolifically published articles, several book chapters and reviews and has mentored many young people who are now practicing physicians and scientists. He completed a mid-career MPA program on Health Care Policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government in 1997-98 and retired as emeritus
professor of surgery in 2001.

A generous and dedicated friend and family member with an indomitable spirit for living, Jud is survived by his wife Jane, son Larry, daughters Suzanne, Cathy and Laurie, brothers Daniel and John, sister Judy and eight grandchildren. Donations in his memory may be made to the John A. Burns School of Medicine, 651 Ilalo Street, MEB 223J, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813.


- Denotes U.S. Military Veteran