A dear friend, no more

This morning (17th Jan 2007), I got the shccking news that Shri Ramani of Solar House had passed away in the early hours.

An avid chess enthusiast, a silent worker and above all a wonderful human being, Shri Ramani had a nice word for everyone. in all my interactions with him (over several years). I have never seen him angry or shout at anyone even when things were not happening the way they should be.

His love for Children was immense and anyone who passes by south mada street in mylapore would notice an elderly gentleman playing chess with probably a kid of 3 years or so and it would be difficult to gauge who is younger if one goes by the level of enthusiasm. He has been conducting the Chess competition for many years and everyone who participated would leave feeling a winner.

He would always address me as ‘Badri Sir’ for as long as i can remember and despite my protestations he would just smile and the next time I would go in, he would call his wife and tell her that ‘Badri Sir has come’. His hospitality was only matched by his humility.

He was a great support to his wife and my teacher Mrs.Chandra Ramani and to his entire large family. I cannot but forget his tireless efforts in propagating the devotional songs of my grandmother through the Kanyakumari Festival that was conducted every year in a pomp manner, as if it was their family event.

Just a week back, late night of 8th Jan when I approached Mrs.Chandra and sought her help in conducting mrutunjaya homam to revive my ailing grandmother, Shri Ramani coordinated with the priest and purchased all the materials in time. But for their timely guidance, help and support, this homam would not have happened.

The chess enthusiasts in Chennai and in Mylapore in particular, have lost a great coach and patron. He would certainly be missed a lot, for a long long time to come. I am left poorer by the demise of a great person!

Ramani Sir, may your soul rest in peace

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