"If you cry because the sun has gone out of your life, your tears will prevent you from seeing the stars." - Rabindranath Tagore
This memorial is dedicated to Ali Zadeh, who tragically left us on March 8, 2011.
Alireza was born on March 27, 1971, in the city of Shoushtar in southern Iran. He spent most of his childhood in the city of Ahvaz and at the age of fifteen, alongside his family, he moved to Tehran. Alireza finished his high school education by obtaining a diploma in Mathematics & Physics, his favorite subjects. He then took the annually administered university entry exam, (Konkour), and ranked 54th among nearly one million exam takers. Four years later, in 1993, he graduated from the reputable Sharif University and received his bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. After graduation along with two of his classmates he founded and established an engineering company. In a short period of time, and with determination and hard work, the small company grew into a major and successful engineering corporation.
Despite his massive amount of responsibilities at the company, in 1997, Alireza decided to return to school for his master’s degree. He was accepted to the University of Tehran’s Electrical Engineering Master’s Program, with specialization in Telecommunications. In 1999, Alireza moved to the United States in pursuit of his education. He was accepted in the Ph.D. program in Information Technology from George Mason University in Fairfax, VA, and after graduation in 2003, he began his career in the US.
Alireza had immense passion and interest in traditional Iranian music. He sang it beautifully and played Persian musical instruments well. Consequently, while attending George Mason University, he participated in the cultural-musical activities of Persian cultural club of school. Solmaz, who was also attending George Mason University at the time, and was likewise a member of Persian club, met Alireza during the same period. Given that they had so much in common their relationship blossomed into marriage in May of 2005.
Sadly in October of 2006 Alireza was diagnosed with a rare type of head and neck cancer for the first time. After going through chemo and radiation therapy, Alireza’s health partially improved. Nevertheless, in August of 2007, the disease came back stronger than before to a point where chemotherapy treatment was no longer adequate and doctors gave up all hopes on his life. At this point, physicians predicted his lifespan no more than a year. It was then that Alireza looked into more traditional treatment methods, including traditional and herbal Chinese medicine, homeopathy, naturopathy … He strongly believed that he can overcome his disease using these methods and decided to pursue with perseverance and a kind of determination found throughout his life. About three months later, after a full body scan and medical exams, there was no trace of cancer in his body, which had the doctors astonished.
This experience changed Alireza’s vision and methodology towards life. He became even more humble and true-hearted. During his short lifespan he determinedly tried to impact his surroundings positively. He was a man of principal and his moral ideologies were of extreme importance to him. He did not ignore or overlook issues or topics of concern, and was constantly pursuing solutions and answers to his questions. His love for Iran and Iranians was well-known and he cared deeply about growth and advancement of Iran.
Alireza was a bright individual. One of his remarkable characteristics was that he passionately strove for knowledge. Based on the same enthusiasm for learning, in August of 2010, he was accepted to George Mason University this time to obtain a Ph.D. in Economics. Unfortunately, 2 months later, he fell ill as a result of the deadly disease, cancer, attacking him in a different form. After few months of an extremely difficult battle with the disease, on March 8, 2011, Alireza left us in search of discovering the answers to his unanswered questions. May he rest in peace.
God Saw you getting tired
When a cure was not to be
So He wrapped his arms around you, and
Whispered, " come to me."
You didn't deserve what you went
Through, So He gave you the rest,
God's garden must be beautiful
He only takes the best
And when I saw you sleeping,
So peaceful and free from pain
I could not wish you back
To suffer that Again