…left his body on 21st January 2016.
Azad, originally from North Carolina, took sannyas in Pune and came to Rajneeshpuram in its first years and was mostly working in the construction department Chuang Tzu. He is remembered as a sweet man, with an incredible determination to get things done.
From Gyaneshwar and Geya we hear that after the Ranch closed he also spent some time with the Kalindi group in San Diego, CA. In recent years he had been working in East Asia for an international commodities trading corporation and that he had set up a happy family in the Philippines with Gemma, a boy and a girl.
Punya remembers (from her book ‘On the Edge’): “Once the steel I-bars were lifted onto the foundation pillars (a back-breaking job done by another crew), a wooden beam had to be fixed to the steel as a connection to the floors to come. This was the job of Azad, a short, rugged and brooding man with a red complexion. Apparently he needed an assistant and that was going to be me. My job was to place the beams on top of the I-bars ahead of him so that he could just walk along the beams and shoot in the nails. We had our own truck which pulled our yellow compressor. The most precious asset was the high-powered Hilty nail gun which he stored in its immaculate bright red metal box. Needless to say, I was quite impressed by the power of this deadly weapon which could pierce a steel I-bar, and I knew not to distract him during his work. This made me feel quite lonely as he would not talk during our tea breaks either and I started missing my old companions….”
And: “Once I had learnt to use the nail gun, the caulking gun (which was kept at the correct temperature in a ‘warm box’ between uses) and was comfortable in leaning over on both sides of the ladder, it was easy to extend the ladder a little bit further to reach the second floor. But when I had to move to another window, I took the time to climb down the ladder and reposition it under the next window. The boys, on the other hand, just ‘walked’ their ladder over rough ground, holding onto the roof with their hands while their nail guns dangled from the ladder.” (one of those daring boys was Azad!)
Beloved Azad, another fellow traveler from the ‘whole life’ experience of Rancho Rajneesh has gone ahead into the Great Something (à la Kaveesha). Azad’s “full moon” glow reflected the brotherhood that fed the shared heart’s expansion in those wonder-filled days of creating the Oregon Commune. Farewell my brother,