Sunday, November 18, 2012

From Ann Wilson

I first met Roger when he became the head of the K-12 English department at the Koc School in Istanbul where I worked at that time as the coordinator of the K-5 group.

I have to admit that my first thought on learning there was a new head of department was - I hope he has the sense to let me get on with doing what I know works well and doesn’t interfere! So I was quite apprehensive when I had my first meeting with Roger as I had no idea what he was like. Needless to say I was pleasantly surprised because my first impression was that he most certainly had the sense and insight not to interfere with what was working well!  I often joked with him about that concern I had before meeting him! 

Roger was a man who actually listened and cared. I remember telling the teachers in my department that all was well. We had a very calm and strong gentleman as our new head of department. I was impressed! We all grew to love Roger. His calmness and kindness affected everyone and he was always joyful, positive and cared for everyone equally. He really was a true gentleman.

I not only respected Roger as my boss but I also came to love him as a very dear friend. I also admired the strong love and devotion he had for his family. He was a great man. We met weekly and he would come over for our meeting and we had coffee and talked of many things. The conversations I had with Roger over the years were great. They are little treasures that I will always remember. Even after Roger left, he stayed in touch and whenever he and Lorraine visited Turkey he always made the time to come over for a coffee and meeting as he had in the past! The last time I saw Roger was on such an occasion last April. I had no idea that this was to be my last meeting with Roger.  I will greatly miss my conversations with him but I will continue to talk to him because I am sure he is not far away and is seeing and hearing everything. Strangely, about 2 months after Roger visited my computer at home crashed and all my files disappeared except for one; the file of Roger’s poems that he had sent me over time.  I will miss Roger dearly and I feel  privileged to have known him, and to be able to call him my very good friend.

Here is a picture of Roger at one of our meetings.

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