One of my treasured possessions is an inscription Professor Rassias wrote for me which continues to comfort me in times of doubt. He signed it “with love and respect, John.” With love and respect. That was how he treated everyone.
At night when the cleaners came in, we would be the only ones in the building and John was so supportive of their work (even though he would whisper to me that they didn’t do a very good job). The team that worked in Wentworth Hall told me he was the only professor who knew their names.
I consider myself fortunate to have worked in John’s office for years while I was at Dartmouth and after graduation. I had a rare glimpse behind the curtain of the most hard-working and loving man I have ever known. I saw countless students come to Wentworth Hall looking for inspiration and understanding and receiving what they sought.
It means so much to me that he was able to see something in my twenty-two year old self at a time when I couldn’t see it myself.
“To Melinda, A truly authentic human being whose energy brightens our lives.”
Right back at you John.
With love and respect.