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Sorry to see you go. Violist joins our other dear departed friends

Sorry to see you go. Violist joins our other dear departed friends

Old Feb 25, 2021, 4:58 pm
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Portland, OR
Programs: NW Plat (now they call it DL Diamond) 1MM, soon to be DL Plat, Hilton Diamond, SPG Gold, Dusit Gold
Posts: 2,706
RIP with the orchestra making beautiful music

Sad to see an old friend no longer with us.
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Old Feb 26, 2021, 1:46 pm
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Programs: Choice Hotels Platinum
Posts: 281
I had the immense pleasure of meeting Michael a couple of times and as can be seen by the outpouring from his FlyerTalk family here, he was a wonderful soul and we are all the better for knowing him, and I cannot emphasize that enough. He was very soft-spoken but his words carried much weight with his wealth of knowledge of many topics and his love for life. I am very saddened that I will not cross paths with our friend Violist at a Do or random meetup, but I know he will be with all of us in spirit, and I send my deep condolences to his family and friends.
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Old Feb 26, 2021, 11:59 pm
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: YVR
Posts: 2,127
So sad to hear of this from a mutual friend today. It has always been a pleasure to run into him at a Do, be it in Japan, SIN, NUE, Berlin, or Alaska, or at OzFest. I don't even know when/where I first met him, I just know it came to be that goodbyes felt temporary, I generally expected I would see him again at some random Do somewhere in the world. He was a genuinely nice person and I always enjoyed our conversations, however fleeting. My condolences to Pat and all others keenly feeling his loss.
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Old Feb 27, 2021, 12:59 pm
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Hell's Kitchen, NYC
Programs: NW Plat, Hilton, Avis
Posts: 674
Farewell, friend

What a tribute to Michael, seeing all the heartfelt comments in this thread.

It would be sad to die without ever having really lived. Each of us journeys through life from one event to another, from one adventure to another, gathering experiences and making memories. Some live just a little, others live much more, but few live as rich and full a life as did Michael.

Eleven years ago, as the subject of his health came up, Michael said he was scheduled to be in a Boston hospital upon his return home. I still remember him in the lounge at Singapore Conrad as he confided with a chuckle "my cardiologist doesn't know I'm here." The physician may have said take it easy, but Michael knew better. Life is for living, and Michael's life was made longer because he WAS living. As he mentioned in his farewell note -- do the things you enjoy. When others would have "packed it in", Michael continued to jet around this planet - for eleven more years of living.

Like so many Flyertalk friends, we travel to places near and far, to learn and to enjoy what our world has to offer -- its wondrous places and interesting people. There is no way I would have seen so much of this world without this group. And wherever I went, whatever new place I explored, Michael had already been there, and he had his knowledge to share and tips to offer, making the experiences so rich. He knew the food, he knew the wine, he knew the culture, he knew the history, he knew the territory. In countless cities I would find myself on some metro with Michael, amazed that he needed no map. He had a meek way of knowing everything without being a know-it-all.

It is more than fitting that Michael's life centered around music. There seemed to be not one composition of classical music with which he was not familiar. Music involves harmony and unity, and Michael always seemed to be in harmony with the place where he was, and one with those lucky enough to be in his company. I joked with Michael in Nome as we came upon an animal in the back of a pickup truck, that he was the caribou-whisperer. In that shared moment, the animal seemed to calmly sense something special about this human.

Michael was indeed full-spectrum -- the entire scale from the low notes to the high notes -- as said earlier, from greasy spoon to three-star Michelin dining. From the cheap bottle to the finest award-winning vintage a winemaker had to offer. His knowledge of wine helped to educate me and also educate many a restaurant would-be sommelier. Michael was always in perfect tune with both the rookie traveler and the million-miler.

After sharing so much of himself with us, Michael's life is now complete. While we may not see him again face-to-face, I dare say there is nowhere in this world I can go where I will not think of him.

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Old Feb 27, 2021, 4:56 pm
Join Date: Aug 2012
Programs: US, HH
Posts: 897
BD, that was beautiful.
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Old Feb 27, 2021, 5:49 pm
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Hell's Kitchen, NYC
Programs: NW Plat, Hilton, Avis
Posts: 674

The spare tire didn't fit during the infamous Teller odyssey. Said one traveler: "We might be stuck here until dark." The reply: "It gets dark in September."

Last edited by bdnyc; Feb 28, 2021 at 2:29 pm
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Old Feb 27, 2021, 10:58 pm
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: SEA/YVR/BLI
Programs: UA "Lifetime" Gold, AS MVPG100K, OW Emerald, HH Lifetime Diamond, IC Plat, Marriott Gold, Hertz Gold
Posts: 9,513
After finally meeting Michael in a person at a Do (Oz Fest or ?), we ran into him twice at airports, once at DEN in a club and once in 2015 boarding ORY-EWR. I can't get our Facebook photo to load. Great memories still...

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Old Feb 28, 2021, 12:57 am
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Lake Oswego, OR
Programs: UA 1K 2MM, Marriott Lifetime Platinum, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 3,202
Violist and Lili at the 2010 Starwood Mega Do in Austin.

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Old Feb 28, 2021, 12:15 pm
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: LAX
Programs: UA Plat MM, CM Plat, Amex Plat, Hertz CP, Hyatt Globalist, SPG Gold, Vons Club
Posts: 6,855
Gosh so saddened to hear of the news. I met Michael at a DO in BOS Not too long after I joined FT. There was a group of local Bostonians, we met for a happy hour and I was really thrilled to meet all the fellow FTers. As others have stated he was extremely warm and inviting and a really good conversationalist. I remember when the bill came, he was collecting peoples cash and I think he had a roll of coins to turn in and I learned about how people were doing MS, which was totally new to me. RIP Michael, And thank you for the time we had together
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Old Mar 2, 2021, 11:39 am
Moderator: Hilton Honors forums
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Marietta, Georgia, United States
Posts: 25,042
I was not as close to Violist as other FlyerTalk members; but I sure am glad I had the opportunity to meet him and hear him play the violin.

May he rest in peace...
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Old Mar 3, 2021, 10:41 am
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 4,329
He was a lovely man and I remember visiting with him way back in 2004 in Singapore
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Old Mar 3, 2021, 7:25 pm
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Fort Worth TX
Programs: AS MVP Gold 75K, Marriott Titanium
Posts: 483
Such a talented man.

Michael Loo - Assabet Valley Mastersingers
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Old Mar 4, 2021, 10:01 am
Founder of FlyerTalk
Join Date: May 1998
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Posts: 6,540
there are the pictures, but i have the memories.

this is news to sadden all FlyerTalker's. violist was certainly as described by others—a member with a soul that will certainly be missed. i was lucky to have met him very early on and can now say that the 20+ years since we first met is just the start. there are pictures here that bring back the images of a most wonderful member and thankfully i have the memories that continue on. one of my first memories of violist actually came from another member who contacted me asking about accepting an upgrade certificate from a stranger on FlyerTalk ... the stranger was violist. indeed, violist was a 'pay it forward' type of member who embodied the idea of community. and while i did have to separate him and punki once(!), he was easy on the keyboard for us all. some will remember him for the wine. i will always remember him for the music—the music of life here on FlyerTalk. RIP, violist, RIP.

As we do with each passing member, we recall the line from the movie "Up In The Air" which clearly put our passions of travel and memories of members into perspective:
"Tonight most people will be welcomed home by jumping dogs and squealing kids, their spouses will ask about their day, tonight they'll sleep, the stars will wheel forth from their daytime hiding places and one of those lights slightly brighter than the rest will be violist' wing-tail passing over."
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Old Mar 4, 2021, 6:01 pm
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
Programs: Airline Free Agent, Fairmont Lifetime Platinum, Hyatt Globalist, Hilton Honors Diamond
Posts: 3,041
Very sad to hear of the news. RIP Michael.
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Old Mar 5, 2021, 9:03 am
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Programs: UA Million Miler (lite). NY Metro area.
Posts: 15,174
Originally Posted by Randy Petersen
one of my first memories of violist actually came from another member who contacted me asking about accepting an upgrade certificate from a stranger on FlyerTalk ... the stranger was violist. indeed, violist was a 'pay it forward' type of member who embodied the idea of community.
In the very early days of Secret Santa, violist was my secret Santa. He sent me a UA SWU. This was in the early 2000's. I was shell shocked at his generosity. I sat upfront and upstairs on the 747 from the US. JFK/LAX/NRT/SIN for SinDo. Thanks for the reminder Randy.

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