Sometimes the fragility of life is brought home to me in an abrupt and painful way. There’s been two occasions in the past month when I have had cause to be grateful for every hour I am granted.
I suspect that losing the people who are dear to you is a part of growing older – one more milepost on the journey we are all taking.
During this past month, I lost a very good friend. I may not have seen Warren Todd as often as I would have liked to, but I will always be grateful for his mentorship. At least I did have an opportunity to have dinner with Warren the past Christmas in New York. Warren, who lived in the US, was the father of the Disease Management Association of America (DMAA). I was privileged to travel to many places in the world with Warren and international friends. Much of my thinking on disease management was shaped during those trips when we talked, developed and implemented DM programs and ideas. Warren’s passing is a major loss for DM all over the world.
Last night, closer to home, I heard of the death of one of the doyen’s of South African healthcare, Jack Perel of Mediscor. I will always remember Jack for his unbelievably positive demeanour and attitude to life no matter what it threw at him. Jack was one of the very first switch operators in healthcare. I remember him analysing his reams of paper printouts from room-sized mainframe computers in the late 1980’s.
Jack and Warren you both have had major impacts on my life. I know your legacies will continue.
Thanks for what you have left behind for all of us. We will miss you both.