Letter to the Editor: Remembering Thibault

By PRASANNA VANKINA

I am not entirely sure why I was so affected by the recent Campus article and news of Thibault’s passing. Here are some of my reflections on our brief yet sincere interactions.

The first time I met Thibault was at a Thanksgiving dinner at the Arabic House in 2017. It was a night of awkward formalities and small talk that was soon replaced with silly rounds of charades and deepening conversation. Thibault created room for both — for amusing interactions and quiet moments of exchange. He mentioned that he worked at the Observatory and we spoke about astronomy. I told him I could never find Orion’s Belt, and he changed my mind. Our brief conversations since that fall had often circled around stars and soccer — both meaningful parts of my childhood and adolescence that I had largely forgotten, but that he helped me rediscover here and there. Thibault was the kind of person I wanted to someday figure out. My brief interactions with him, even in passing, felt like being on the cusp of discovering a fascinating secret — and somehow still feeling content with not knowing. This is what it feels like to look up at the night sky in wonder — appreciating its beauty but also accepting its vastness. I can only imagine that Thibault has joined the celestial bodies he so loved sharing about. I no longer find it difficult to find Orion’s Belt, and will always think of him when I do.

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Letter to the Editor: Remembering Thibault