The Signature Q&A: Jaime Jiménez

Dr. Jaime Jiménez, 57, is Chief Vitreo-Retinal Surgeon at Southern Eye Center. He has completed more than 50,000 procedures in his career and was the first full-time retinal surgeon in South Mississippi. He has received numerous awards throughout his career and lectured on almost every continent. Dr. Jimenez has five children and two grandchildren and is currently engaged to be married. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling, riding motorcycles and listening to music. “Music has been with me since I can remember,” he said. “Since a very young age, my father exposed me to fine orchestral music, opera and gave me vivid memories of great performers. I was encouraged to learn an instrument, which for me, the choice was the classical guitar. I encouraged my kids to learn an instrument and supported the musical arts for the betterment of our community, either at church, USM, WCU, Hattiesburg Concert Association or Hattiesburg Youth Symphony Orchestra.”

What is your idea of happiness?

To be in harmony with nature.

What is your greatest fear?

Losing my mind.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

Polyphagia

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Dishonesty

What is your most prized possession?

An original copy of a poem I wrote in Spanish when I felt my first child quickening.

Which talent would you most like to have?

Be an accomplished musician.

What is your idea of misery?

Becoming a burden to my family.

What is your favorite quality in a woman?

Faithfulness

What is your favorite quality in a man?

Keeping their word.

What do you most value in your friends? 

Spending time with me.

Who is your favorite fictional hero?

Don Quixote because he was an anachronistic idealist who was willing to pursue a dream and overcome adversity.

Who is your hero in real life?

Anyone who is willing to sacrifice themselves for the greater good!

Who are your favorite authors?

Gabriel Garcia-Marquez and William Sommerset Maugham. (I really like the short story “The Verger.”)

What was the worst day of your life?

Seeing one of my children in the ICU fighting for their life.

What is one thing most people don’t know about you?

That I used to act in a soap opera in Puerto Rico.

What was the happiest day of your life?

I can think of many, but the one that stands out is the day my first child was born.

What do you hate the most?

Inconsiderate, selfish people.

How would you like to die?

Quickly, preferably while sleeping once I have fulfilled my objectives in life.

What is your greatest regret?

Not telling people how much I loved them before they departed.

 What words would people use to describe you?

I hope they would say nice, with a good sense of humor, good listener, skilled, and compassionate.

 What is your motto?

A clear conscience lets you sleep well at night, and I like sleep.

What is your present state of mind?

I am very happy and have a clear vision of where I want to be and how to get there.

Besides the Pine Belt, where is your favorite place to be?

On the beach in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

What would you eat for your last meal?

Iberic ham 5J fed from acorn-fed pigs, with accompanying Manchego cheese and a nice Rioja red wine.

If you could have dinner with anyone - dead or alive - who would it be?

Dr. Milam S. Cotton (Sonny 34). He was truly my best “life” mentor. I miss him very much.

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