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.”