This April we remember with great fondness, Dr. Charlie Chen, a Family Practice practitioner at the Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center. His life was cut short by COVID-19 on April 28, 2020. During his 13 years with Addabbo, he earned the respect of his colleagues and was a sought-after and trusted physician with a tremendous patient following.
His colleagues remember him always arriving early to work with a broad smile and a friendly greeting. He was seemingly tireless even though quietly battling cancer. Some of his colleagues will fondly remember him as being an avid swing dancer at holiday parties, dancing and smiling the night away with everyone willing to be his partner – swinging and spinning them! He was fun, a true gentleman, always polite and dedicated.
His patients will remember him as a doctor who had a genuine interest in their lives as well as their health. In addition to his many years in Family Medicine at Addabbo, Dr. Chen took care of families in Rockaway for more than 2 decades. He referred to his years of service as “my honor” to have cared for so many families – in some cases, several generations in the same family.
Knowing Dr. Chen, he would have continued his service as a true warrior against COVID-19 and would have been filled with hope and promise at the development of the vaccines. To be sure, he would have been very excited that his patients and colleagues would be able to receive a vaccination to protect themselves against COVID-19 and would have encouraged them all to get the vaccines.
He set a high standard for meaningful service and will long be remembered.
The song is ended, but the melody lingers on. – Irving Berlin