It is with the greatest sadness that we share that our beloved Dr. Craig Hisaka passed away on June 12, 2019.
Dr. Hisaka, a Stockton native, graduated as one of the top students from Edison High. He was a 3-sport athlete playing quarterback on the varsity football team, basketball and was named All -Conference in baseball. Dr Hisaka then went on to study at the University of California, Berkeley. After graduating from the University of California Berkeley School of Optometry in the 1970’s, he went on to earn a Master’s in Public Health from Cal. He then returned to Stockton to practice Optometry.
Within a few short years he brought in a partner, Dr. Judy Prima and soon after that Drs. Robert and Rosemary Melrose and we became the San Joaquin Optometric Group. In 1998 he had a vision to merge the 3 largest optometry practices in Stockton. Dr. Demshar, Dr. Vanover, Dr. Skinner and Dr. Hsu joined the practice and we became The Brookside Optometric Group. Since then Dr. Fujii, Dr. Laurel, Dr. Loo, Dr. Chow, Dr. Scheer, Dr. Girn, Dr. Nguyen, and Dr Weissenberg have all joined our group.
Dr Hisaka had a visionary desire to expand the scope of care within our practice thus allowing us to provide state of the art care for our patients here in Stockton. He knew that by combining our skills and talents we would be able to maintain our time with our patients. He knew that it would take a large multi-doctor practice to be able to afford the specialized diagnostic equipment that would become necessary to give the quality of care he desired for all of us to offer. Finally, he also wanted the practice to continue to grow to allow opportunities for new graduates any of the Optometry Schools to find a home here to see patients.
Dr Hisaka was happiest when he was helping his patients. He got to know them as friends, not as just patients. In an era where doctors rarely spend more than 5 minutes with you, he would spend 45 minutes with each patient making sure that no stone was unturned in the exam and that every aspect of his care for his patients was understood by them.
Dr Hisaka was also an educator and taught at UC Berkeley for over 35 year and was awarded the title of full Clinical Professorship. He was only the 6th part time faculty member to receive this title in the Optometry School’s history.
To us he was more than a doctor and an educator—he was also a partner, a friend, and a mentor. Words cannot describe what we are feeling at this time. We do know that his wisdom, knowledge and guidance will be felt by all of us each day as we continue to see our patients in the office that he envisioned.
Goodbye dear friend. We will miss you.