Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim was in stable condition today at the Queen’s Medical Center after suffering chest pains while exercising in his Hilo home.
Kim, 78, drove himself to Hilo Medical Center after experiencing chest pains around 4 a.m. today, county spokeswoman Janet Snyder said. He also called county Managing Director Wil Okabe and other staff to notify them of the situation, according to county officials.
“He was coherent and he drove himself to the hospital,” Snyder said. Kim was medivaced to Queen’s around 6:45 a.m., she said.
As of late afternoon, there was no diagnosis, said Okabe, who is serving as acting mayor while Kim is on sick leave.
“Harry’s in stable condition and they’re looking at a procedure,” Okabe said. “They’ll give him some options later on today or tomorrow.”
The mayor has been undergoing tests, and was not accepting visitors, he said.
“We want to respect his privacy and let him rest as we wait for the doctor’s determination on what the next steps are,” Okabe said.
Kim has had three previous heart attacks, and underwent quadruple bypass surgery in 2008, county officials said.
“He knows the symptoms, and he knows what to do,” Okabe said in a news release. “We’re offering prayers for Harry, knowing that he’ll be back very shortly.”
Okabe held an emergency meeting of the county department heads and executive staff this morning to alert them to the situation.
“We’re going to continue to do the work; everyone assured me that they’re committed to carrying out the mission we always have – of making this a better place to live,” Okabe said. “Harry has confidence in everybody that they’ll continue the mission.”
Gov. David Ige said in a written statement, “Mayor Kim has a fighting spirit and I know he’ll want to be back at work serving the people of Hawaii County as quickly as possible. I wish him a speedy and complete recovery.”