August 24, 2021

CAN YOU HEAR US, MARCO?… Mourners Call Out At Marco’s Memorial Conference

The heavily attended online memorial conference for the deceased AIMS Cameroon Academic Director, Prof. Marco Andrea Garuti, was marked by a carefully selected lineup of speakers from several parts of the world. Each had a unique story to tell about Marco’s selfless love for Africa and its young people.

It was easy to see from the tributes and messages shared on the zoom event, that many were yet to come to terms with the fact that he was gone.

As the AIMS Communication team passed the rights to speak from one mourner to the next, a unique metaphoric theme, the kind the deceased would relish, soon sprung to life. Each mourner came aboard, calling out, “can you hear me?” And while the question was directed to the audience at the memorial conference, the words that followed often referred to the memory of the departed Marco, soon got many heartbroken attendees asking if Marco could hear us by any chance.

For the man whose life was marked by many exemplary human qualities, among which was effortless humor, and who definitely would not have missed the joke, however unsettling, this steady shouts of can you hear me from each mourning student or colleague, was a much-needed piece in the conference that sought to relive his every minute with us, and his every laugh.

As captioned by the representative of Cameroon’s Minister of Higher Education, “we believe the dead are never truly dead.” Thus every day for the rest of our lives, when such subtle nuance shows up, we will remember our friend, our father, Marco, and we will laugh at the thought of what joke he would have told under the circumstances. And if we laugh out loud, may our broken hearts be strong enough to help us ask; Can you hear us, Marco?


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