DR. RICHARD T. MAMIYA
March 8, 1925 August 27, 2019 Dr. Richard T. Mamiya, respected heart surgeon, medical trailblazer and philanthropist, passed away peacefully at home on August 27, 2019. He was 94 years old. Born on March 8, 1925 in Honolulu to Tsurumatsu and Margaret Mamiya, Richard grew up with three siblings in Kalihi. Due to academic performance and athletic prowess, he received scholarships that supported him through St. Louis School, University of Hawaii, and St. Louis University Medical School in Missouri. After marrying Hazel Ikenaga in 1950 (who predeceased him in 1996), he completed medical school and his residency in Missouri and returned to Hawaii where he began a career in general surgery. He helped plan the University of Hawaii Medical School, becoming its first Professor of Surgery and Department Chairman, and then practiced cardiac surgery, a rapidly developing field. His procedures saved thousands of lives. He estimated that he performed more than 10,000 heart surgeries, plus 20,000 other types of surgeries in his career. Richard said his best work was repairing congenital heart defects in children. He spoke with great fulfillment about saving the life of a two-week-old boy whose heart was completely turned around with a single operation, and who became the world's longest survivor of a heart transposition at that time. Due to his own experience as the recipient of others' philanthropy, community service and giving became his strong focus. The Mamiya Theatre on the St. Louis School campus, the Mamiya Science Center at Punahou School, The Richard. T. Mamiya Science Adventure Center at the Bishop Museum and the Richard T. Mamiya Medical Heritage Center at Queens are all the result of his desire to support our community. Other beneficiaries of his philanthrophy include the Japanese Cultural Center, Palama Settlement, Holy Trinity Church, University of Hawaii, the Honolulu Museum of Art, Blood Bank of Hawaii, the American Heart Association and others through the Richard T. Mamiya Charitable Foundation. His diverse activities and influence led to wide-ranging honors such as Father of the Year in 1969, Red Cross Humanitarian of the Year in 1991, Outstanding Philanthropist in 1993 and the Government of Japan's "Order of the Rising Sun" in 1996, among many others. Richard is survived by his brothers George Mamiya (Elaine) and Bert Mamiya (Betty), and his eight children - Lauree Weaver, Christin Mamiya, Richelle Fujioka (Larry), Monica McLaren (Chris), Richard Mamiya, Matthew Mamiya, Dede Mamiya and Jonathan Mamiya (Kapu) and eight grandchildren. Services will be held on Sunday, October 6th at Punahou School's Dillingham Hall at 1601 Punahou Street. Visitation at 1 pm, Service at 3 pm, followed by refreshments. Aloha attire. No flowers, please. Donations are suggested to "The Dr. Richard Mamiya Memorial Fund" at Palama Settlement (810 N. Vineyard Blvd, Honolulu, HI 96817) and St. Louis School (3142 Waialae Ave, Honolulu, HI 96816).
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased