Eusebio E. Llamas, MD (1926-2021) “Small in Feet but Giant in Feat”
Dr. Eusebio E. Llamas was the epitome of a great teacher, a devoted father and a prime mover. In 1952, he underwent residency training in Bellevue, New York where he stayed for one year and then proceeded to Los Angeles where he trained at the House Ear Institute. Upon his return to the Philippines, he joined the UST Department of EENT and subsequently became the section chief of ENT. In 1978, he assumed the chairmanship of the Department of EENT until 1983.
As prime mover, he was instrumental in the separation of the Dept. of Otolaryngology from the Dept. of Ophthalmology in 1984 and led the department until 1989 earning the distinction of becoming the longest serving chair.
He would invite residents (who were in awe of his demeanor in handling patients) to see interesting cases in his private clinic. He demonstrated compassion to all patients regardless of their social status. In the operating room, he exemplified finesse in doing surgeries and made it look so simply seamless. He never showed any mean streak and always appeared calm even amid adversity. Whenever there were issues in the department or among residents, he would talk to them in private and would counsel them like a father to his children.
He was deeply religious as he would go to the chapel first thing in the morning before he went to the OPD at 8 am sharp. He taught the residents the virtue of punctuality by being at the OPD ahead of them, and 30 minutes in advance of his scheduled operations. He was impeccable in his choice of apparel, always dressing up with the perfect triangle of the Windsor tie
The only reason why I wanted to become an ENT as early as third year medical student was solely because of Dr. Llamas. He would literally deliver his lecture verbatim from Boise’ Textbook of Otolaryngology including pauses for commas. He inspired me a lot and told myself, I wish I could do at least half of what he could memorize and that would be good enough
He was very open to inviting graduates from other institutions to join the department as exemplified by the acceptance of Dr. Carlos Reyes for Otology and Dr. Robie Zantua for Head and Neck Surgery. He was never threatened by other consultants practicing at UST and in fact encouraged them to do so.
He was a dedicated father to his children Rose, Jun, Beth and Annie and a devoted husband to his wife Lulu. He would always think of his family’s welfare over his own. His extended family would always seek his support whenever the need arose, and he would welcome them with open arms. To the family, thank you for generously sharing Dr. Llamas during his most productive years.
The best tribute the PSO-HNS offered to Dr. Llamas was choosing him as the Most Outstanding Teacher in 2020. We would not be where we are today if not for the selfless dedication of our dear Dr. Llamas. As Thornton Wilde said, “The highest tribute to the departed is not grief but gratitude”.
Maraming Salamat at Paalam
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