Jimmy Borges: “I’m learning how to die”

Today I recieved a mesage from my good friend at Careless Navigator , Rohan that there were some strange stories getting around about Jimmy Borges.
After some investigating I found that sadly there was some bad news to be discovered.

I have interviewed Jimmy twice now and to say that he is one of the nicest people you have ever met is an understatement.  An incredible talent who has the most amazing stories and is loved by all.

My wish is that I get to see him do one more show in Hawaii, now that would be a dream come.

click this link to hear a recent interview I did with the great man.

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) –
Jimmy Borges has been singing professionally for 60 years, but he’s reached a final act. Late last year doctors diagnosed a fatal form of cancer in his liver and lungs.
“I’m living, learning how to live, living to live. Now I come to the process of where I have to learn how to die,” he said.
In May Borges’ oncologist told him he has six to eighteen months to live.
“Knowledge is power. The more I know the better I can focus on things that I not just need to do, but things that I want to do,” he said.
Borges, 80, is married and has a daughter in Los Angeles.
“The people that really suffer the most are the people who love you. They have to live their own life and they’re living your life too, my wife and my daughter, and all that.  That’s so hard on them,” he said.
Borges said his circumstance is an opportunity to encourage others, and he doesn’t want it to go to waste.
“Everybody has a point where dying becomes a part of their thought process where they have to deal with that,” he said. “Everything in life is a speed bump. They’re all speed bumps. They’re not stop signs.”
He jokes that the ideal time for him to go would be at the end of a show..
“Singing my last note. Everybody standing up and cheering a yelling. And then I go whoomp! That’s cruel. But that would be funny,” he said.
Borges beat cancer in 2011.  This time he turned down chemotherapy and radiation. He wants the best quality of life for the time he has left.

Story By Jim Mendoza

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3 Comments

  1. He was a good friend to me and all
    Who seen him sing a song like Elvis said always sing a song
    So I will !
    He is now with Elvis and his idol frank Santra
    Every time I see Hawaii 5o he will be alive with our memories
    Signed a fan

  2. Heart breaking. One night back in ’96, while I was struggling to pull together a cast reunion for the show Hawaii Five-O, Jimmy called me up late at my office to commiserate and give me some energy to hang in there. It just blew my mind that anyone would do that, other than Jimmy MacArthur, who played Danno on the show. The two Jimmies became my lifeline, and got me through it. It was a quiet affair, not publicized at all on the Mainland, publicized like crazy in Hawaii.

    One night when we first arrived in Honolulu, Jimmy had us go to the club he was singing at (Hawaiian Village? Don’t remember) and dedicated a part of the show to us. Tremendously overwhelming. And his voice! I was in love, being a fan of old jazz and pops from 40’s and 50’s.

    He kept encouraging me even after the event was done, and stayed ohana. I’ve always treasured the kindness and big heart of this man, and wish I could find some way to fix this newest tribulation. But in any event, will be sending love and aloha to him and Vicki and his daughter, who have so kindly shared this magical man with all of us so long.

    Stride well, Jimmy, and know you are SO loved by so many!

  3. We have known Jimmy since 1971..He is one of the most gracious entertainers with the warmest personality we have known throughout the years. Our sincere mahalo to Jimmy for sharing his God-Given talents with his multitude of fans, friends and Ohana for over 60 years.
    No words can express how we all feel with the knowledge that “The Keeper of the Flame” will suddenly put that flame to rest.
    A sportscaster once remarked during an Olympic game, “Do you believe in miracles?” That miracle will, hopefully, transfer to Jimmy Borges. Hoping to be with us longer than the docs have predicted!
    Thanks Jimmy..for the smiles and songs you have given us. Here’s to more!
    Aloha nui loa..

    Nick Sylvester
    Former Hawaii resident

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