Dionisio Legaspi `Don' Garcia Jr., 67, physician

April 22, 2005|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,SUN STAFF

Dr. Dionisio Legaspi "Don" Garcia Jr., a physician who specialized in cardiology and internal medicine, died of cancer Tuesday at Stella Maris Hospice in Timonium. The Hunt Valley resident was 67.

Dr. Garcia was born and raised in the Philippines, where he received his medical degree from the Aznar College of Medicine at Southwestern University in 1961.

In 1963, he moved to Baltimore for an internship at Maryland General Hospital. He had residencies in internal medicine at the Sisters of Charity Hospital in Buffalo, N.Y., and Harrisburg Hospital in Pennsylvania. In 1967, he returned to Baltimore and studied cardiology at what is now Mercy Medical Center.

He established a general medical practice three years later on Baltimore National Pike in Catonsville, and later relocated to Eastern Avenue in Essex. He remained there until poor health forced him to close his practice last fall.

Dr. Garcia had been on the attending staff at Mercy, Franklin Square and Bon Secours hospitals, and was a cardiology consultant at the Social Security Administration.

"In his private practice, he was an old-fashioned family doc," said Dr. Michael N. Rubinstein, chief of cardiology at Bon Secours Hospital. "And he was also a highly technical cardiologist who had a special interest in ultrasound wave studies of the heart."

Dr. Rubinstein recalled that Dr. Garcia took pride in teaching cardiology technicians at Bon Secours.

"He constantly challenged us and our minds to ask more questions about the heart," said Carolyn Greene, a Bon Secours clinical supervisor. "He was a no-nonsense teaching doctor who was strong on his principles and demanded that the patient came first."

"He had a good bedside manner," said Dr. Homayoon Moghbeli, chairman of the department of medicine at Bon Secours. "He also brought a good sense of humor."

"He brought professionalism and compassionate care to his patients," said Sister Alice M. Talone, national president of the Bon Secours congregation. "He lived out the mission of the hospital."

Shortly after moving to Baltimore, Dr. Garcia met his future wife, the former Lynn Hennaut, a registered nurse. They married in 1965, and she died last year.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10 a.m. today at St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church, 100 Church Lane, Cockeysville, where he was a member.

Survivors include a son, Matthew Dean Garcia of Baltimore; two daughters, Julie Garcia Welch of Hong Kong and Jennifer Garcia Stefano of Lutherville; a brother, Michael Garcia of the Philippines; three sisters, Gloria Jane Sadaya of Springfield, Va., Betty Cruz of Henderson, Nev., and Evelyn Pato of Salinas, Calif.; and a granddaughter.

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