Dr. Aponte served the Latino and surrounding Milwaukee community for nearly 45 years.
By H. Nelson Goodson
Hispanic News Network U.S.A.
May 23, 2020
Milwaukee, Wisconsin – On Saturday, Dr. Leonardo J. Aponte M.D., 86, from the Clínica Latina S.C. at thr 1200 block of S. Cesar E. Chavez Drive in Milwaukee passed away as a result from complications of novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). Dr. Aponte had served more than 225,000 patients in nearly 45 years of affordable health and medical care service in the Southside of Milwaukee. Dr. Aponte was general practitioner, including a family medical practice and was a certified Nuclear Medicine doctor. He spoke four languages, French, German, Spanish and English.
In 2015, Dr. Aponte in a video celebrated his 40th Anniversary in medical practice and affordable care service to the Latino community.
Dr. Aponte worked on several projects, one of them was to create a minor surgery clinic facility to do affordable surgeries for patients saving them high cost fees otherwise charged at hospitals. The second project was to establish a resource clinic to treat drug and alcoholic addiction.
The Clínica Latina is a full health care service provider including minor laser surgery for the last 20 years.
At first, Dr. Aponte began to treat Mexican and Puerto Rican families, today the Clínica Latina has been able to treat patients from Asia, Europe, Central and South America. Everyday, we get new patients, especially younger in age, Dr. Aponte told Hispanic News Network U.S.A. (HNNUSA) in a 2015 interview to celebrate his 40th Anniversary in medical practice.
In brief: Dr. Aponte arrived in Milwaukee from Connecticut in 1974 after finishing his Nuclear Medicine studies. He first practice medicine at the Medical Surgical Clinic at the 2500 block of W. Lincoln Ave. from September 1974 to July 1975. While at the clinic on Lincoln Ave., Dr. Aponte noticed that Mexican families weren’t getting the medical services needed. On August 1975, Dr. Aponte was able to start his practice in a one room office at a dental facility with late Dr. John Gonis who established Dental Associates on S. 16th St. (later renamed S. Cesar E. Chavez Drive) and Ron Silverman, his partner who had an Optical practice. He practice medicine for four months at Dental Associates and then briefly moved to the 1600 block of W. Greenfield Ave. on the upper level of the Gull Pharmacy. He practiced medicine for the next 8 years at 1322 S. 16 St. and provided free medical consultation to Mexican families at the Guadalupe Church School.
Dr. Aponte later opened the Clínica Latina S.C. at 1238 S. Cesar E. Chavez Drive in the Southside of Milwaukee.
Update: On Monday, the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office listed Dr. Leonardo J. Aponte’s death as COVID-19 related and a result of complications with the deadly virus and the death investigation is ongoing for final determination of his death.