I am remembering every little memory i have of that great person who has inspired a lot of people, especially the students. i knew SirMike from my friends, and i usually see his name on the books my friends read during our early years in college. Then we do see him everyday because he is always in UP everyday, especially when my friends hangs out at the UPdorm, and were close to him. I knew at least from my unconcious observations then that he was one of those few UP professors who deserved to be called one, who was passionate about life and what he was doing.
A few years back, sir mike was interested in making a book, and it was just quite amazing, of all the fine arts students he knew, i got to have a short conversation with this Great man about illustrating for the book. I don't know what happened then, but that was also the year when i got my dream job. Sayang it never pushed through. :( but i think that certain happening gave me the confidence, that hey, someone not close to me actually thinks i can do this.
And then reading from a college schoolmates status last Sunday night, after all the father's day greetings on the news feed, saying that this Great man just passed away was the most shocking thing and definitely the saddest. Sir Mike will definitely be missed by all, he was an inspiration to all, and he has really done so much in his life.
His last line to me was when tope and i saw him in ayala with his wife a couple of months ago, "magkita ra nya ta, kai ipang-uli man ang mga paintings.." with his usual smiling expression, i don't know if that were the exact words, but that keeps on playing in my head now, still at shock that he had already passed away.
i hope to be able to visit SirMike's wake today with some college friends, at least to personally say goodbye and thank you to this Great man.
REST IN PEACE Sir Mike Mende.you will always be remembered.