“All is well that ends well”. This is the last message I received from our beloved Dean and friend, Dr. Bill Wechsler, before he suddenly passed away. It is with mixed feelings that I write these few lines, a mélange of great sadness and memories of beautiful moments filled with compassion, laughter, intellectual stimulus and conviviality.
Dear Bill, you were taken away from us too soon and it is painful to understand why tragedies happen to good people; why tragedies happen, full stop. Definitely, our burgeoning but solid friendship cannot be summarized in a short eulogy. Your life cannot be celebrated in few words. From a caring and thoughtful father to a humble scholar, professor and leader, you may be gone, but your energy will live on in all of us. I know I will never forget you, and if you were here you would probably tell me, as usual, to cheer up and have faith in my dreams and in the future.
“Life and death are one, even as the river and sea are one
In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond,
And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.
Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate of eternity…
For what is to die but to stand naked in the wind and melt it into the sun?
And what is it to cease breathing but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seed God unencumbered?
Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing
And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb,
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance”.
(Gibran Khalil Gibran)