Tribute to my Professor

I just learnt that my personal tutor in law school, Prof John Parkinson, passed away on 19 February 2004 of a brief illness.
I remember the first time I met him back in 1997. I knocked on his door at the appointed meeting time. I was standing in a hallway lined with with many other such doors.
“Enter,” a crisp voice at the other end, called.
There was a man at the end of the room, seated at his desk. I was surprised by how he looked, because all the other professors I knew of, were old, balding, bearded and grey-haired.
“You look young for a professor,” I ventured.
He smiled. “I look younger than I am.”
John, as I called him, was a distant mentor in my first year. I only started seeing more of him when he became one of our Contract Law lecturers in our second year. I still remember how he described to us the case of the exploding coffin with a straight face, which made us roar with laughter. He apparently had a more devastating effect on my seniors, who were seen swooning and gushing about how smart he was, after one of his lectures.
I started talking more to him when he became my Company Law tutor in my final year. He gave me suggestions on how to improve my scores (which were admittedly not fabulous), and was willing to mark my practice essays promptly.
Hearing of his death prompted me to check my inbox for the emails he sent to me. I last wrote to him when I was applying for my Masters course at USC, last year. He agreed to be one of my referees. I was glad he even remembered me.
Rest in peace, John… God bless your family.
[Update: The Guardian had a respectful and sincerely written obituary on him on April 9, 2004. ]


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