by: Bertrand Huchberger
I'm now in San Francisco and unable to attend the 9 October gathering to honor Andy, but I'll be there in spirit with the following I'd like to share with you about our late dear friend.
Although we did not know each other well at the Naval Academy, Andy and I go back to the early 80s when we met in Geneva. At the time we discussed my interest in establishing a technology brokerage firm there. He actively encouraged and supported me in my efforts to do just that. In fact he offered for me to stay at his home for several weeks while I laid the ground work for a consultancy. After 25 years of consulting during which I could always count on him for advice, I shut down my firm to join another group doing something similar. Andy was there again and available to provide counsel. Our personal, social and professional interactions spanned over more than 30 years. During this time, he was always ready, willing and able to help me, and others for that matter, resolve any problem large or small, always coming up with imaginative solutions…with a "why not" instead of a "why" approach. Also, he was a "great connector" to wit, his creation of the Burlamaqui Society 25 years ago that brought together people of diverse backgrounds to debate current political and social issues in the context of the Declaration of Independence's "… inalienable right to individual liberty and pursuit of happiness..". Under Andy's aegis, the evenings I participated in these gatherings were always lively and thought-provoking.
When I introduced him to Heidi, my new wife, they immediately connected on many topics including the political front - Heidi agitating for Republicans and Andy on behalf of Democrats. He and Chantal welcomed us to his in-laws' home in the Savoie where French Resistance were active during WWII. There, he detailed their exploits in the manner Andy was wont to do. We cherish this visit as truly memorable in the early days of our engagement. Also, we will treasure the last time we were with Andy in Geneva a few weeks before he died during which we pursued a lively discussion on religion over dinner.
I shall miss him very much as a friend, classmate and and tireless advocate for overseas Americans.