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by Subhash Lathi

May 30, 2005

Achievements in swimming and folk dancing

Amar Lathi,  came in this world facing challenges. He was born in a remote village in India, where there were no doctors or hospitals. After a difficult birth he clung to life and finally made it after a long struggle.

These challenges never left him. If there were no natural challenges, he created them by going into competitive sports. His youth was a whirlwind of dates, sports, dancing, more dates and lastly studies. He excelled in school with minimal studies. He was always amongst top ten in his class. He did not believe in being a geek to be at the top. His philosophy was maximum benefit with minimal work. No wonder he excelled in jobs that required managerial skills.

On a serious note he was extremely dedicated to his family. We were two years apart and fought constantly over everything, and some times over nothing. Yet if an outsider bothered me, he would put his life on line.

We were not affluent. He was intent on making his family comfortable. So, at a tender age of 22, he embarked on the journey across the oceans to New York, with enough funds to survive for six months, and absolutely no one to fall back on. In summer vacations, he drove a truck in New York City and lived on a foot long hot dog costing 30 cents, which was his daily food budget.

After graduating from the University of Tennessee he joined the work force and immediately started supporting his family in India and paying the tuition for my medical school, so I could complete my education. He met Janice at a folk dancing group and realized what true love is. Jan and Amar opened their home to all of us, and helped us to come to USA. They helped us adapt to the American customs.

Through all these years of stresses, he never gave up his dream of being a top athlete, and his passion for dancing. His achievements in swimming and folk dancing are well known. With the same tenacity and mental strength he fought his cancer. Unfortunately he did not win that fight and left us on May 16, 2004.

An Indian Saint, Kabir wrote "When you are born you cry and the world laughs in happiness. Devote your life to such deeds that when you die the world will cry but you will be tranquil and smiling." Amar followed this doctrine.

Amar, you had a heart of gold and you will be terribly missed. GOD BLESS YOUR SOUL

(Subhash Lathi is Amar's brother)

Submitted by Margie Hutinger