It is with a very heavy heart that I send you this edition of
About a fortnight ago I had a message from Prakash Thadani
(1960 - 1969), who was a founder member of the Cathedral &
John Connon Alumni Association and former President of the
Alumni and who is currently still involved with the Alumni
I regret to inform you of the sudden demise of Rajkumar Advani
fondly known as Kumar Advani on early hours of Thursday 27th.
The funeral was held at the Chandanwadi Crematorium on Thursday
morning and the Condolence meet (MARKA) was held at ther Jai
Hind College Auditorium on Friday 28th.
His effusive presence will be missed by all those who had got to
know him over the past few years.
I was also informed of the same by Hasnain Chinwalla (1950 - 1959)
from Toronto, Canada:
Late last night I heard from my cousin in Mumbai who reported that
Rajkumar Advani had suffered a massive coronary last week and
passed away. He was one year senior to us, but had a lot of friends.
His two brothers, Ashok and Hiro were also at Cathedral. I am trying
to get his address so I can send a note of condolence.
I knew Rajkumar well as we walked around the CCI block almost daily for
many years. Although he was one year my senior, he was someone who
enjoyed talking to all age groups on a variety of subjects. He was always a
very happy person and will be missed by all those who knew him. He would
turn out to support the school in many of its sporting events, especially
cricket. Like me, he loved an argument. I was not lucky enough to meet
him after I left India in 1963.
The second sad news I have was conveyed to me last night by Abe Hayeem
in England when he copied me on his email to Luke Salmon, son of Rider
Salmon, our English teacher between 1956 and 1958.
Photograph supplid by his son Luke Salmon
This was the message received by Abe Hayeem from Luke:
> From: "luke.salmon"
> Date: Wed, 09 Jan 2002 05:05:20 +0000
> To: Abe Hayeem
> Subject: Rider G Salmon
> Dear Abe Hayeem
> It is with regret that i have to tell you that my Father died on Saturday
> 5th January at home.
> There will be a service of remembrance this Friday the 11th in St Andrews
> Chuch, Kings Road, Colwyn Bay at 3.30pm
> yours sincerely
> luke salmon
This was Abe’s reply to Luke.
I only just opened my email (Friday at 6.00pm) and was shocked and
saddened to hear of your bereavement of your father . Please accept
my deepest condolences to you, Pauline and all your family.It will be
a great loss to you all and our thoughts are with you at this difficult
When I last spoke to him and your mum, it was about this time last
year, (to give news of the passing away of Pam Ballantine, another of
his students and a friend) Pauline did say that he hadn't been too
well, but he still sounded like I remembered him from those years at
Cathedral School, and also the couple of times that we saw him and
your mum when my wife and I visited them at Colwyn Bay many years
ago.It's still a shock to hear of his passing, and also signifies an end
of an era.
He will be remembered fondly by us and all at Cathedral School
who knew and were taught by him, both for his great teaching,
and also his jovial nature and sense of humour that made him
such a popular figure.
I will post this on the "Seventh Heaven" email circuit of
ex-Cathedralites through Jacob Matthan, all of whom I am sure
will join me in sending our condolences. Please give our love to
Abe Hayeem and Family
I have, yesterday, sent the following email to Luke:
I was very saddened to hear of the passing away of my finest teachers
a person who always had a smile, quite mischievous at times, on his face.
I will always remember him charging me as a forward in the staff hockey
team as I played in goal.
Abe was kind enough to let me know and I will send out a special edition of
Newsy Notes to inform Cathedralites around the world of this sad loss,
a truly great friend of many who passed through his care. I shall also place
a tribute, mine, to a person who was much more than a teacher to us - a
friend who loved all his students.
I hope you will convey my condolences to your mother and other members
of the family.
Yours in deep sorrow,
Editor: Seventh Heaven
Such sad events that are becoming more common place amongst our age group
brings deep sorrow within me and I realise that life is such a short
space of time that we must enjoy each other as long as we can.
It is sad I did not have Rider’s email as I would have had loved to have
him read some of the things I have written, especially as my writing style
was formulated under his guidance. I have much to be grateful for to this
“English gentleman” who gave me so much.
I especially remember him doing the cricket match sequence in "A Pattern of
Islands" (?) by Arthur Grimble about the Gilbert and Ellice Islands. He
laughed as much as us when he was reading it out in class - our 10th Standard,
when late POP Stan Pharoah was our class teacher.
If I remember coirrectly, he did Shakespeare’s Midsummer Nights Dream in
the 8th Standard, Tempest in the 9th and Hamlet in the 10th with us.
I am a bit confused whether it was John Billington who did Macbeth with
us in the 11th for I seem to remember Rider reading "Out, out damned spot"
to us at some point of time.
I also remember how effusive with praise Rider was when he announced that
Elijah Elias had won the Ookeridge Essay prize while we were in the 10th
Standard. Rider compared Ooky's humoristic style with that of none other
than P. G. Wodehouse, who, at that time, was one of my favourite authors.
No doubt, you will now remember how Elijah got this pet name of
Ooky, which has stuck with him till this day.
There is one point on which I am not clear as it was pointed out by Vinay
Dabholkar when he corrected me that Rider was not our class teacher in the
8th Standard, but Mr. A. Zavala from Peru. I stand corrected on this point,
but did Mr. Zavala go for a holiday to Peru, or was he unwell for a period
of time when Rider was our Class Teacher for a short time that year?
But above all I do remember Rider on the hockey field when I saved a
particularly stinging shot from the top of the D to the goal from him.
He smiled at me and with his twinkling eyes and typical British humour
said “That will be 5 marks off your next essay!!”
I would be grateful if anyone could send me a photograph of Rider for my
album, as also pictures of other staff that you may have with you. The
picture of the CBS Staff in 1960 which Willie kindly sent me does not
feature Rider who had returned to UK by then.
I hope through this email I can convey the sincere and heartfelt condolences
of all those who had the privilege and honour to be taught by Rider and of
knowing him as a wonderful human being.
And finally a few words about a topic which I seemed to have caused a stir
about - Viruses being spread inadvertently by some of you. I do not mean to
complain but only point out that the computer is only a tool for me to do my
work. I am not an expert on it. Hence if people tell me this and that about
what has to be done about viruses, it is far to above my head.
Hence, I chose a computer system that does not have any viruses. For 17 years
I have been free from them. As I gave an analogy the other day - if I buy a
pen and it leaks, I get it fixed. If it leaks again i throw it away and get myself
one that does not leak. If my computer is virus and bug ridden, I would
throw it away and get one which is not bug ridden. I have been successful
in choosing a system which is free of bugs and viruses. What really bothers
me is that others do not respect the sanctity of those who have chosen to
stay away from viruses even when they know full well that they are using
a system which propagates viruses around the world.
I am not suggesting any particular system for you to choose. I am not a
computer expert to help you draw road maps on choosing computers.
All I emphasize is that you should, like junk mail, try to ensure that you
do not make life miserable for others because you believe in using a
It is very likely that a class action suit will be be formulated against
those who spread viruses, advertently or inadvertently, as people do
have a choice but are choosing to ignore it. Most of you who sent me
viruses over the last 3 months do even know that you have done so,
as it is done behind your back by the programmes you have on your
computer. You will only know it when friendss like me tell you about
it or your entire system crashes causing you much heartbreak.
Yours with a heavy laden heart,
1954 - 1959
Prefect 1958 - 1959
School Hackey Goalkeeper 1958 - 1959
Savage House Captain 1959