Nothing made Dr. Edgar Ednalino happier than to see those around him happy. And oftentimes, the Philippines-born pediatrician was the source of that happiness, going the extra mile to care for his family and patients.
“He took care of his family,” said daughter Dr. Christina Ednalino Rothman of Roslyn. “He went above and beyond just raising me. His siblings were still in the Philippines, so he helped put his nieces and nephews through college. Over the last few years he helped look after my two boys as well.”
Cousin Suzette Santos of Inwood said of her godfather: “Uncle Edgar was the kindest man you could possibly meet. He was always there for the kids, always wanting to help and was just a very happy-go-lucky guy.
“He always greeted me with a kiss. Back when I was in the Philippines, he would send me trains, Pringles, whatever I wanted. He gave me my first skateboard when I came to this country.”
Ednalino died May 4 of complications from the coronavirus. The Woodmere resident was 72.
Born to Jovita and Francisco Ednalino and raised in the municipality of Candelaria, in the Zambales province of the Philippines, Ednalino attended the University of Santo Tomas for undergraduate studies and medical school. A pediatrician for 40 years, he adored children and took care of foster children in Brooklyn for most of his career.
Although his passion was medicine, Ednalino’s true love was music. Accomplished on the piano, guitar and vocals, he enjoyed emulating musical icons such as the Beatles, the Everly Brothers and Patsy Cline, as well as children’s songs.
“Music brought him such joy. When he learned how to use Facebook, he would post recordings of his own compositions,” Rothman said. “One time, he was the mystery guest at my son’s preschool. He brought his guitar and harmonica and played ‘When You Wish Upon A Star’ for the class. I’ll never forget that.”
When he retired two years ago, Ednalino focused his attention on memorializing his late uncle, Conrado Yap, a highly decorated Filipino war hero who fought in the Korean War. Thanks to Ednalino's efforts, Yap was recognized in Candelaria with a statue and a street and library/museum named in his honor, as well as a nonworking holiday and inclusion in the school curriculum.
Ednalino loved to travel but also found excitement exploring right at home in New York City.
“He had this routine where he would sit in McDonald’s with his one-dollar cheeseburger, coffee and Kindle. Everyone knew him when he walked in,” Santos said. “Throughout his life and in his memory, you could never say a bad word about him.”
In addition to his daughter, Ednalino is survived by his wife, Dr. Linda E. Ednalino. He also leaves behind his sister, Cynthia; brothers Carlos and Fidel; and two grandsons.
Services were held June 10.
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