I remember my father every day. He was a huge man, both figuratively and literally. He was never small, even into his 90's. His considerable physical presence, irrepressible intellect along with his booming voice shook many a classroom as well as our house growing up...on a regular basis.
He used to refer to his mathematics professor at Princeton, Emil Artin, as "the great man". It was a rarity for my dad to express unadulterated admiration for anyone. He was, among other things quite a critical observer of people and the world in general. Fiery and outspoken but undeniably brilliant and insightful on a seemingly limitless range of topics. To me, at least, he was a genuine "polymath" (there has been some debate on the use of this word to describe my father in my family, but these debates themselves are part of my father's legacy). Growing up in the shadow of our own "great man" was, to say the least, a complex process and not always easy. But he lent us a feeling that somehow we too were special, having been bestowed, perhaps, a few of those gifts he so prominently displayed. I remember him daily. Frankly, not always with the "unadulterated admiration" he had for his own father and Professor Artin. He was a complex man and it was, (as he used to say), "by definition" a complex process to be his son. But I nonetheless think of him every day, and when I do, in my mind, I call him "the great man". Irreplaceable.