Maui News

Hawaiʻi Entertainer Jimmy Borges Dies

May 31, 2016, 3:27 PM HST
* Updated June 1, 5:16 AM
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    Jimmy Borges. Family photo.Jimmy Borges. Family photo.

Jimmy Borges, Hawaiʻi’s legendary and beloved jazz singer and actor, passed away peacefully in the arms of his family, at his home on Monday, May 30, 2016, from cancer.

Borges was born on June 1, 1935, and died two days before his 81st birthday.

The news comes on the heels of the 39th Annual Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards ceremony during which he was honored as 2016 Male Vocalist of the Year and Favorite Entertainer of the Year.  He also earned awards for Jazz Album of the Year and Album of the Year for his self entitled album produce by Jon de Mello with Mountain Apple during the Saturday evening event.

Vicki Bergeron Borges, his wife of 32 years released a statement saying, “On behalf of Jimmy, his daughter Steffanie Borges-Juergenson, and our entire family, we are so very grateful for the love and support we have received from our friends, our community and from Jimmy’s fans in Hawaiʻi and throughout the world during these final months of his life. His decision to live his way until the very end was exactly the right thing for Jimmy and both a gift and a lesson for the rest of us.”

The family is planning a small, private Catholic mass per Jimmy’s wishes and asks for privacy during this time. There are friends who would like to remember Jimmy in a more public way and those details will be provided at a later time.

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US Senator Mazie K. Hirono released the following statement:

“For six decades, Jimmy Borges brought joy to audiences with his unique voice, distinctive vocal jazz interpretations and warm sense of humor. Throughout his musical career, Jimmy entertained, but he also served with distinction as an ambassador for Hawaiʻi.

“Off stage, Jimmy regularly gave back to his community, and particularly to Hawaiʻi’s young talented musicians. The Jimmy Borges Endowed Scholarship at the University of Hawaiʻi ensures that underserved students will have access to educational opportunities to help them pursue their musical dreams. My thoughts, prayers and aloha are with Jimmy’s wife Vicki and the entire Borges ʻohana.”

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