Dr. James Mahoney’s family, friends, and colleagues should have been celebrating his retirement, but instead they’re remembering the life of a doctor who many called a hero.
Mahoney, 62, died from the coronavirus on April 27.
According to The New York Times, at the beginning of the pandemic, his loved ones urged him to take a break from practicing medicine. After a 40-year career, he had seen it all. He had been on the front lines of the AIDS epidemics, September 11th, and Hurricane Sandy, but Mahoney wouldn’t back down.
He kept busy by working shifts at multiple hospitals in New York. When he wasn’t at a hospital he was helping patients via telemedicine.
Unfortunately, in mid-April, he came down with a fever. He isolated at home, while continuing to treat patients, but eventually he had to check himself into University Hospital, where he worked day shifts in Brooklyn.
“I got to visit him, hold his hand,” said Dr. Robert F. Foronjy, Mahoney’s boss. “And he knew how much I loved him. And he knew how much everyone here loved him.
Mahoney died on April 27 surrounded by his colleagues.
“He worked on the front lines to the end,” his brother, Dr. Melvin Mahoney, who retired in 2014, said.
While he spent a great deal of time away from his family, his children never faulted him for it.
“That was like his calling, he loved to take care of people,” his son, Ryan Mahoney told ABC 7. “I mean, he died doing what he loved. So I have peace in knowing that.”
A GoFundMe was set up to fund the Dr. James (Charlie) Mahoney Scholarship Fund. The fund will support for an “African American applicant to attend SUNY Downstate Medical School.” Mahoney attended and graduated from SUNY Downstate Medical School before becoming a physician.
Thank you Dr. Mahoney for not only helping coronavirus patients when others urged your to take a step back, but for inspiring others in your community. You will be missed.