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A chance meeting at the sign-in table

It was August 1978 in New Delhi. I was part of a group of volunteers who were organizing a symposium for the Press Trust of India. A young 20-something, I had no idea how many luminaries were gathered there for the event. Among them was Anthony Lewis. I happened by chance to be reading his book, “Gideon’s Trumpet,” while working at the sign-in desk. In comes Mr. Lewis, who sees the book on the table and asks, with a small smile, “How are you liking it so far?”

I am so glad today that I had the presence of mind to connect the book with the man standing in front of me. I asked him to autograph my book, and what he wrote was so gracious and thoughtful.

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I read Kevin Cullen’s column on the perfect gentleman that was Anthony Lewis (“Greatness as I saw it,” Metro, March 29). Reading all the outpouring of affection and reverence for Lewis, I am beginning to understand what a powerful force he was locally and nationally. I am eternally grateful that we had that chance meeting 35 years ago.

Nalini Gopinath


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