The celebration was held in the MIT Faculty Club in the East room. It was a beautiful evening with clear skies, and from the room one had beautiful views of the Charles River and the Boston skyline (the MIT Faculty Club is right on Memorial Drive, which follows the banks of the Charles River).
Rishiyur Nikhil brought two large vases of colorful flowers on behalf of the IITK Director, the IITK Community and Alumni (Label on Flower Arrangement).
By 5pm, the room was packed, standing room only, perhaps a 100 people or more. It was joyous moment; Prof. Dahl's ebullient, optimisitic outlook on life infecting the mood. Friends and colleagues from MIT and from IITK were present.
Dorothy Dahl had brought along a wonderful black-and-white enlargement of a photograph of Prof. Dahl and Prof. Kelkar having a laugh together outside a brick building. It was evident from the photograph how well these two men enjoyed each other's company. They obviously made a terrific team.
Prof. Stephen Crandall, Professor Emeritus at MIT, partner-in-crime with Prof. Dahl in writing the famous Crandall and Dahl text book, played jazz piano as guests were arriving.
At the entrance to the room was a silk fabric in a frame and, as they arrived, guests were invited to sign on the fabric with colored pens.
Scanned images of the printed program: Pages 1, 2, 3, and 4,
Charles Vest, President of MIT, opened the proceedings. He, too, is a Mechanical Engineer, and first learned of Crandall and Dahl through the famous text book! He got to know the Dahls after coming to MIT as President (in the early 90's) and spoke eloquently about what warm and wonderful human beings they were.
Prof. Stephen Crandall, Professor Emeritus at MIT, spoke next. He spoke eloquently about the long and wonderful collaboration he had with Prof. Dahl, both on a professional and personal level.
Prof. John Kenneth Galbraith spoke next. He was U.S. Ambassador to India during the KIAP period, and obviously loved Prof. Dahl and his outlook on life, even though he was from arch-rival MIT (Galbraith was a professor at Harvard)! The gathering was thoroughly entertained by his sharp wit and his reminiscences of that time, including how he used his connections with MIT President Jerome Wiesner to defuse an awkard request he had been asked by the State Department to place before Nehru. He spoke about the impact of the KIAP program and IITK, and the enormous benefit America has received, many times over, from that investment and participation. He, too, spoke eloquently about the warmth, generosity and graciousness of the Dahls.
Rishiyur Nikhil spoke next (his speech); he spoke on behalf of Prof. Arvind of MIT and a few other professors from the KIAP era, and on behalf of himself.
Arijit Bose spoke next (his speech); he spoke on behalf of the IITK Community, Alumni, and on behalf of himself.