Photography

Myung Rae Cho M.D.

1936 ~ 2020 (age 83)

Tribute

It is with great sadness that the family of Myung Rae Cho announces his
passing, on June 23, 2020, in Danville, CA, at age 83, after a long
illness. He is survived by his loving wife of 53 years, Chung Sook, his
daughter Solin (Pieter Schouten), son Shaun (Celia), son Daniel (Grace),
and 7 grandchildren, Matthew, Katie, Kristina, Sophia, Kaden, Kees and
Teo. He also leaves behind 2 sisters, Mirae Lee (Hae Kook) and Hirae
Walker (David), 2 brothers, Ook Il (Kim Sung Ja) and Jung Rae (Kim
Chung Ook), and 11 nieces and nephews.
Myung Rae was born on August 20, 1936 in a small village near
Daegu, South Korea, the second of 6 children and the eldest son. He
survived Japanese occupation and World War II, the Korean War, extreme
poverty, the loss of his parents in his early 20s, and
debilitating pulmonary tuberculosis as a young man, yet through his
intelligence, sheer inner strength and determination, and the loving
support of his extended family, he excelled academically. He graduated
from Kyungpook National University with a medical degree in 1963. After
completing his residency training, he continued on as an attending
physician at Daegu Dong San Presbyterian Hospital (now Kemyung
University Hospital). There, he met Chung Sook, a nurse, and they
married in 1966. In 1971, in pursuit of a better life for his family,
Myung Rae emigrated with his wife and children to the United States,
settling first in Detroit, Michigan. In order to practice in the US, he had to
complete another internship (St. Joseph's Hospital) and residency (Henry
Ford Hospital). After practicing for one year in Amherst, Massachusetts,
Myung Rae relocated with his family to Walnut Creek, California in
1976. He completed a specialty fellowship in neonatal medicine at
Children's Hospital Oakland before opening a private practice in general
pediatrics in Pittsburg, CA in 1978. During his time in practice, he was an
attending physician at Los Medanos, Mt. Diablo and Sutter Delta
Hospitals. In 1979, he moved to Danville, CA, where he and Chung Sook
continued to live until his recent passing. He practiced for 41 years, caring
for multiple generations of children, until his retirement in 2009. Upon his
retirement, the California State Department of Health Care Services
honored him for his dedication to the care of the underserved children of
Contra Costa County through his career-long involvement in the Child
Health and Disability Prevention (CHDP) Program.
Myung Rae had a strong will and an unwavering sense of purpose
centered around his family and his faith. He was an adoring and tireless
father, a devoted husband, a doting grandfather, a dedicated and beloved
physician, and an active member of his church, Concord Korean Baptist
Church. He and Chung Sook were founding members of the church and
he served as an elder and a popular bible study teacher for many
decades. Myung Rae was fiercely analytical and methodical in everything
he tackled (from helping his kids with homework, to teaching himself to
play golf, to bible study lessons and the backyard retaining wall he
singlehandedly constructed, stone by stone), his quick wit and sense of
humor perhaps the only traits that could challenge such focus. He was a
deeply caring and empathetic person and a consummate worrier when it
came to his extended family. Humble to a fault, nothing gave him more
pleasure than being surrounded by his loved ones and knowing they were
happy and safe. He often said his children were his greatest source of
pride. Amid our grief and sense of devastating loss, we find some comfort
in knowing he is no longer suffering and finally at peace.
A memorial service will be on Saturday June 27 at 5pm. Due to COVID-
19 restrictions, the memorial will be limited to family members, however
the service will be streamed online. Details to follow.


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