Monday, October 22, 2012
What follows is my reaction to the passing of somebody who was important to me in many ways. What you are about to read was send to my fellow board members but I thought you might want to see what I thought about him and his significant contribution to his fellow man,
Passing of Mike Farrell, My Friend
Part of being the institutional memory for the Oratory Board is that I have seen a great many people come and go and make various contributions. I will never forget the meeting when the nominating committee presented Mike as a candidate for the board. I already knew Mike because of my money management business. Annaly was, and is to this day, a core holding for all of my clients. I was an avid supporter of him for the board.
I believed in Mike’s business principals and his moral fiber. As my practice grew our joint relationship grew. When Mike succeeded me as Chairman of the Oratory Board I told Mike that whatever he needed me to do for him he could count on me to protect his back. We went through many trials together as board members. I witnessed his dedication to the school and what we were trying to do at Oratory. The late night conference calls on the personnel problems at the school and the never ending story of discussions of independence for the school were the basis of many calls between Mike and myself and I’m sure many other board members.
Mike and four other board members including myself retired in June of 2011. There was a picture of four of the five of us that I received some time later. Mike and I spoke in the fall of 2011 and he asked me to consider going back on the Oratory Board. He had two rationales; first, the above-mentioned institutional memory and second, my board service to other Catholic institutions might help tilt the diocese to our viewpoint. If that was Mike’s wish, my job was to comply.
When he was first diagnosed I wrote to him asking to come and see him. He thanked me for my concern and prayers but the doctors were concerned about him being exposed to any infection. We corresponded for a while and then his e-mails stopped. I was overcome with sadness when I saw the e-mail from Bob.
In our life, if we are fortunate, we may have a mentor. In my life I have been fortunate to have two. Sadly for me, both were taken in the prime of their lives. Mike helped fill the void of the first loss and now I don’t know how I will ever fill the void caused by the passing of my friend, mentor, and a true gentleman. I ask that if you have a prayer list for those who have passed at your parish, put Mike’s name on the list. There is an old saying, “When a person’s name is written down he will never be forgotten.”
My dear friend, look down from heaven to see all the good you have done.
To Mary, and the rest of the family, God will get you through your grief. Know that all the Oratory Family and I stand ready to protect your back.