I only met Thierry in person once. He attended a rendezvous in Arizona with his girlfriend, Enrica and my friend, Koen. He didn’t speak any English and I didn’t speak any French, but we communicated well nonetheless. I liked him a lot. He was a gendarme and had a good chuckle listening to me try to talk my way out of a speeding ticket. Loved watching him eat rattlesnake at the Point at South Mountain. I received an email from him on D-Day every year, just to remind me that no matter how strained relations might be between France and the U.S. the French people are always grateful. I wrote back to remind him that we (at least those of us who know history) will always be grateful to the French as well.
I regret passing on the invitation to Morocco. I regret not having that opportunity to see him again. I will go in October and know there will be a dark cast over the group with Thierry’s absence.
You will be missed. R.I.P.