memories

I have no doubt that Richard changed my life. I met him my first year of graduate school, and was immediately taken by the way he managed to not only maintain, but enjoy, a balance between life as a top-flight academic and a man who appreciated other things (such as the orchestra...and the "real world"). Later in grad school, as I hit that wall of self-doubt that most grad students probably encounter, I reached out to Richard. We began eating lunches together and I started to know him as one of the gentlest, most insightful people I had ever met. He never once told me what to do - but his well-placed questions and unconditional support certainly were instrumental into me deciding to stay in the program. I am certainly happy where I am, and I would not be here if not for Richard. People influence our lives every day, but Richard impacted mine more than nearly anyone else I can think of. That being said, my favorite memories of him aren't those dealing with soul-searching over coffee--they're of his playful nature, the sense that he never took himself too seriously, and the obvious joy he felt from simply being present--existing in a particular space in a particular moment, truly living rather than drifting from one spot to the next.

-Adrian Ward