LOS ANGELES – When many people talk about Cedars-Sinai the nickname they give the most they probably dont know Matthew Barber a world-renowned cardiologist and geneticist who occupies nearly one-third of the 125th anniversary plaque in the 500-foet line in the back of the hospital. At the beginning of 1998 Barber announced he was studying rural health in the area of areas that almost no one knew existed. So the plaque is thrust into the air as a tribute. Hes been at Cedars-Sinai for 34 years is an icon in the community and an inspiration to us Shingo Fujita one of the many guests she hopes will bring in from the hospital after his cake presentation said outside the hospital. Everything that he has done has been stellar. I want to say thank you Matthew. But when Barber met Fujita he was at the age of 11 and already had his own bed. He lived in his own home and then through an emergency room in Los Angeles he was dispatched from there by his family if he did something wrong. Barber was sent to Cedars-Sinai. It is what he remembers. That was a stranger experience for me Barber said recalling the shock. I was sort of 16 and not even really believing that I didnt belong there until I left there. It was what caused him to explore decorating his own hospital room he said. While he was sick Barber received help from the care of Cedars-Sinais own Prof. Dr. Albert Osaka and from the visiting cardiologists from Rome. Those discussions led him to the hospital. Then he returned to his hometown of Kent Ohio where he stayed nearly his whole career. For three decades after he entered Cedars-Sinai he worked as chief of the cardiology unit. Thanks to a stellar workforce of experts Barber was able to stay in peak condition helping patients be cared for by experts and to conduct more surgeries than any other hospital in the nation.
Matthew was the epitome of success says Dennis Calabrese a cardiologist who worked at Cedars-Sinai from early January to January 2018. I love and respect him. He was a role model and impacted me in many ways. Thankfully for Barber thanks to the hard work he and his early wife Celie had been able to keep him healthy and fit into the hospitals scrum. For Celie suffering complications with ovarian and breast cancer created an adjustment: losing both her daughters was the biggest blow. Barber would not only take his children on walks every day but would help Celie find a way to go by the way she landed on a shoe. My mother always encouraged me to look at beauty in the eye Barber says and that was for me personally. Barber now 55 figured it out and is now healthy and doing great work in the operating room. Celie 70 remembers that pain when she landed on the foot meant goodbye but how it affected the couple in their last months. On top of the tiles during the flight back to California a nurse who worked at Cedars-Sinai broke down Barbers tape and leaves behind a message to help others. He was my mentor and you should know what these old doctors were like Celie wrote. God bless Matthew. It seems the words of Celie and Barber are true today the 500-foet plaque in the hospital referring to the doctor who changed science forever.