I had returned to campus after a year and half rehab from my accident. My foot and leg still gave me alot of trouble and one day on the way to class my ankle gave out on me.
As I leaned against the wall in the main hall nursing the pain enough to continue walking he approached me and asked if I was ok.
My reply of course was yes, and a small conversation about what was wrong, my accident, and what I planned to do career wise followed. All in all it lasted maybe 5 minutes.
Yet, in that 5 minutes I felt from him more concern and general caring about me and my situation then I had experienced from anyone since my accident in the culinary field.
His name was Chef Prem Kumar. A great man.
Chef Kumar lost a battle with cancer this past June, leaving a rather big hole in the Culinary Institute of America campus. A memorial service was held in the library yesterday to honor his memory and his family.
I knew the man was loved, but the turnout at the service was more then I honestly expected. Hell, its probably hypacritical of me to even say that, seeing as though I spoke to the man directly once, and for five minutes yet I was there to honor him as well.
The one thing I noticed most was the fact that every single student from India who attends class here was there, sitting right up front with pride. The man was both a mentor and a inspiration for these students, to come so far from home to learn more about what they love.
I feel it proper to mention him here, for the man was kind and from what I gather a good man. I wish that I had time to speak to him more, but thats the curse of cancer. It takes from us, and its not till after that we regret not doing, saying, or being more.
I hope that I remember the kindness he showed me in the brief moment we met for the rest of my life, and I use that moment for humility for the rest of my days.
Long live the memory of the good, the kind, and the honest man. For this life is in need of memories of such men.