Thursday, October 26, 2006

In His Friend's Words

Remarks by one of Anuj's close friends at his memorial service...

"Anuj was my cohort-mate, my partner in the leadership of the entrepreneurship club, and my close friend.

After Anuj passed away this summer I spent a lot of time talking to and commiserating with many of Anuj’s friends. The predominant theme in these exchanges was 'I just can’t believe he’s gone.'

Why did everyone say this?

I think the reason why people couldn’t believe this sad news was because Anuj was so full of life. He was always smiling. He was always doing something new. He was always making a new friend or helping an old one. It was simply impossible for people to believe that someone so alive was no longer with us.

What do you say about someone who was so full of life that his friends and colleagues can’t even comprehend his passing? One of histories most famous eulogies was given by Pericles, a 5th century BC Athenian Statesman. In it he said:

'It is hard to speak properly upon a subject where it is even difficult to convince your hearers that you are speaking the truth. On the one hand, the friend who is familiar with every fact of the story may think that some point has not been set forth with that fullness which he wishes and knows it to deserve; on the other, he who is a stranger to the matter may … suspect exaggeration.'

Clearly this is the problem when we talk about Anuj. He was on Wharton’s Director’s List, the President of the Entrepreneurship Club, raised money for the National Kidney Foundation, a member of Alpha Delta Phi Fraternity, a leader in bringing guest speakers to Wharton, and a published researcher at MIT. If you hadn’t known Anuj, you might think I was exaggerating in this list of accomplishments. But if you were privileged enough to have known him, you would understand that this list of accomplishments barely begins to describe the man who Anuj was.

For me Anuj was a dear friend and confidant first and foremost. Last winter we ran cases with each other to prepare for consulting interviews – which as many of you know is an onerous experience at best. But Anuj’s chipper mood and good nature made the task enjoyable.

The best way to honor Anuj’s memory is to continue the work about which he was passionate. The Mohan family has already done an excellent job of this by setting up the Anuj Mohan Scholarship Fund. I think all of Anuj’s friends are extremely grateful for this.

The Entrepreneurship Club is doing two additional things towards this end:
· First, we are dedicating the 2006-2007 e-club in Anuj’s honor and remembrance.
· Second, Anuj had a vision for creating a Wharton equivalent to the Mayfield Program. The Mayfield fund pairs students with partners at prominent VC firms. These partners act as a mentor to the student and arrange for them to have an internship in one of their portfolio company. This program is a great exemplar of Anuj’s passion for entrepreneurship and helping his community. The e-club is dedicated to making Anuj’s vision a reality. We hope that this program will serve as a perpetual monument to Anuj’s memory.

In conclusion I will quote Pericles once again:

'Be comforted in the glory of those that are gone … and remember that the struggle to emulate them will be an arduous one.'

Thank You."

- Matt

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I' ve learned anything
down through the years,
it's that nothing beautiful
in this world
is ever really lost.........

1:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal."
-Albert Pike

Anuj and everything he did is eternal. He will always be with us.

hema

2:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matt is so right--Anuj was so full of life. It's precisely why this is incredibly difficult to believe. How could a man of such integrity, warmth, and substance be taken from us? I don't think I'll ever understand.

10:02 PM  

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