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Wednesday, July 12, 2006


I found out a few days ago that a former colleague of mine had passed away. Actually GH was more than just a co-worker, he was a friend, and someone who I respected and looked up to as well. The news came as such a shock because, well, because you are never really prepared to hear news like this. And also, because I remember GH as someone who always had so much life and spirit.

I met GH way back in 1997 when I started working at Jewelmer International. This was my first job out of college and I was young and inexperienced while he was the epitome of a classic French gentleman, suave, confident, and filled with old world charm. After all he was formerly a jewelry designer for Cartier in Paris and was now head of Jewelmer’s fine jewelry line. But despite our differences he was always polite and pleasant (well, as pleasant as temperamental designers can be!). Three years later, I was head of Retail Sales and Fabrication, and had to work a lot with him on jewelry lines, exhibits, shows, and it was always a pleasure to be with someone who had such impeccable taste - from his designs down to his fashion sense.

I have two fond memories of GH that I will treasure forever. The first was that one night he invited several of us to dinner at his beautiful home in Magallanes where he personally cooked up a wonderful pasta meal. It was a night where we were all relaxed and happy and I really got to see the more playful and warm side that he possessed.

The second was when he designed a ring setting for me. I had been lamenting to him that I loved a particular Cartier setting but did not want to spend an arm and a leg to have them set an aquamarine gemstone I had bought from a friend. With his personal touch, he created a setting similar to the Cartier one that I wanted, but with his unique sense of style that I loved. He made my not-so-expensive gem look like a million bucks and to this day I still receive compliments on that ring.

I haven’t seen GH in more than 5 years and although we have not had any contact since then, at the back of my mind he was always someone I was planning to visit when I go home to Manila. Although he may no longer be there, I wish him well and I wish him peace wherever he may be.


marc said...

Sorry to hear such terrible news. It must have been a pleasant and memorable experience working with a boss/supervisor like that.

Joanne said...

Thanks Marc. Yup, it was a great experience working with him. Definitely one of the highlights of my last job :)

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