Last night, I had the honor of attending the retirement celebration of Jeanne vonRentzell, an undoubtedly boisterous voice in the Micro world at Loyola. I didn’t talk about it last night because the event was already marked by the joyous train of speeches, but I do have a story to share. My dad and I would often talk about things going on in our labs. People were no exception, and there were always good tales regarding growth and the future — and how good a place the lab happened to be in.
One of the moments that stands out to me when it comes to Jeanne was the trip to Boston. This was an incredibly hectic time in the Schreckenberger House. The week before, we had just gone to Minnesota so I could get a place to live. I bought a car, and I was officially moving in two weeks. Of course, in the middle of that two week span was the ASM meeting, and my dad wanted me to present ASHEX in his GNNFB session. That certainly brought about its own chain of pride, but the one thing that we was undeniably stoked about was Jeanne’s poster.
Oh my gosh, he was unfathomably excited about this poster. He ate it up and was beyond happy when it came to the Masters push. That’s just the kind of guy he was, and how could you not sit there and eat it up? He was proud of everyone who worked with him, and that snapshot barely captures a fraction of how proud he was when you, Jeanne, presented that work.
If you thought I couldn’t get sappier… the lab had a surprise for me last night as well. When the 1000th clinical isolate was entered into ASHEX, I knew there had to be a party. That lab is filled with party people. You don’t just hit a milestone. It worked out that the retirement party was at Giordano’s and that was also my first choice for a little get-together. Things converged. Celebrate!
I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised at all that Roman and Kathy called me up and presented me with the certificate above. There isn’t a whole lot I can do to express the feels on that one. The WIPs are probably the best things I have created, even with all the physics stuff factored in. This system has helped people (a heck of a lot of people), and it would not have been possible to build without the work of the lab. It’s a great team accomplishment, and it’s not going anywhere as long as I’m around to maintain it.