Dr. Ishwara Bhat

Published 9:36 am Friday, February 2, 2024

March 29, 1949-Jan. 28, 2024

 

As his beloved daughters, we are heartbroken to share the sad news of the death of our father, Dr. Ishwara Bhat in Boston, MA, on Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024, due to complications related to heart disease.
Dr. Bhat, as he was fondly known to so many, was born on March 29, 1949, to Shankara and Laxmi Mundathaje Bhat as the third of four children in a small village in the state of Karnataka, India. As money was short with their farming family, he relied on his hard work and determination to propel his dream of becoming a doctor, and this helped earn him a spot at Mysore Medical College, where he eventually graduated at the top of his class. His efforts were rewarded with a merit-based scholarship to help continue his medical training at Mount Sinai Hospital in NYC. And so, in 1973, he arrived in America, with a heart full of hope and optimism, and just $7 and the phone number written of a guest lecturer who lived in NYC – someone the young Dr. Bhat had met when this American professor had once come to visit his medical school in India. This was the only person he knew in the United States.
After completing his internal medicine residency at Mount Sinai, Dr. Bhat went to Houston, TX, for a cardiology fellowship at the Texas Heart Institute, amongst the best and brightest mentors of that time. Once his formal education was completed, and with the encouragement of his wife, our mother, Dr. Bharathi Bhat, he then moved in 1979 to Niles, Michigan, to start a cardiology practice and meet the needs of the people in what would become his beloved forever community. He continued to practice as a cardiologist in Niles, Michigan until retirement in 2018 – and served his patients with enthusiasm, love, and devotion for almost 40 years.
As his daughters, we cannot say enough about what it meant to him to be part of the medical community in Michiana. We heard so much growing up about the impact he had on others’ lives – people would recognize our last name and wouldn’t be able to stop sharing how he took care of one family member or saved the life of another. Because of our father, we felt we had just two degrees of separation from everyone in our town. It is hard to describe how beautiful this was to us, or the significant impact it had when we as his daughters went on to consider how we wanted to live our own lives and our career choices. We are incredibly proud of him and the role model he was for us.
After achieving his American Dream, in the end Dr. Bhat prioritized his family, and retired to Boston in 2018 to live close to his younger grandchildren. His family meant everything to him, and we have so many stories – suffice it to say, nothing made his eyes light up more than spending time with his grandkids.
In his last week of life, Dr. Bhat shared with us that he wanted everyone to know that he tried to help everyone. And we know that he achieved this – from helping so many members of his family launch their educations and careers, to caring for his beloved patients in Michiana, and of course the way he helped his family and friends with his jovial spirit and ever happy and welcoming energy. We remember that his morning send-off to us without fail was always the same: “Happy day!” We will remember our beloved Appa this way always.
Dr. Bhat is survived by his wife of 47 years, Dr. Bharathi Bhat, daughter Rashmi and son-in-law Neil Singh, daughter Ramya and son-in-law Srikant Rao, grandchildren Mira Halker, Suraj Rao, Leela Rao, and Sona Rao, as well as so many other family, friends, and colleagues who will forever miss and hold his joyful spirit in their hearts.
A small private funeral service was held on Tuesday Jan. 30, 2024, in Boston, MA. In accordance with tradition, a ceremony will be held on the 13th day of his passing on Friday Feb. 9, 2024, in Boston. This day ends the mourning period and celebrates his life.
Please keep our family in your prayers.
Arrangements were entrusted to the Burke-Magliozzi Funeral Home of Andover. For additional information, please visit, www.burkemagliozzi.com