Today we had a Surprise Retirement Dinner for Dr. Pheanis at C-Fu Gourmet. I didn't find out about this until two or three days ago. Apparently this thing had been in place for a while. I was planning something separately for him, when Marc sent me the evite for the dinner. I sent out the invitation to forty more people. I didn't realize that there were no spots left! They managed to open up a few more, so I was able to get in. But that really didn't matter, because they squeezed in more people anyway!
The dinner was amazing. It was so awesome to see the love, admiration and respect that was there. It is undeniable that Dr. Pheanis is an amazing professor and mentor. Every person in that room has learned something from him. He has instilled so many good values in us. Honesty, perseverence, good work ethics, responsibility, and finally... good documentation (with good grammar) and how to write REALLY GOOD code. I can not even begin to describe what an amazing man he is. He truly is one of the few people I have met, that has inspired me so much. I am not the only person either. There are 109 others at the dinner who feel that way... and 90 others who couldn't make it, that feel that way too. I shall remember everything he has taught me. I feel honoured and consider myself lucky to be his student.
He received at least three standing ovations from us. He was so touched and moved. Especially when he received a framed certificate that said "To the Greatest Professor Ever, Thank You". He was moved to tears.
I don't think any of us there, could have thanked him enough. I wish his retirement had been under better circumstances. But I think that even if ASU doesn't care, his students and his colleagues do. That's really all that matters. We will all remember him for what he taught us and for what he is - an excellent professor.