We are deeply saddened to note the passing of Dr Anoop Maini. He was a pillar in the community, a pioneer in the field of cosmetic dentistry, and loved much by his family, friends, and patients.
I first heard the tragic news on Monday, July 22nd 2019, and my instinctive reaction was that this can’t be true, there has been some mistake. Unfortunately, this was not the case.
Reality sunk in when I attended Anoop’s memorial. I listened to his brother speak into the microphone to address a room brimming with people from all over the country. Some of the guests had only met Anoop for a few short moments, but that didn’t matter to those who were struck by Anoop’s talent and spirit.
Everyone always said ‘Anoop had time for us,’ so they returned the favour, making sure to take time out of their schedules to remember him–not because they felt obliged, but because they yearned to pay their respects to a man who meant so much to them.
His brother eulogised Anoop beautifully. He mentioned that Anoop used to make jokes that he’d have to pay people to come to his funeral. The anecdote generated laughter and smiles all around.
It was fitting that his memorial comprised of some humour since Anoop always had a smile on his face and made himself available for a chat or to offer advice.
His friends, colleagues and patients recount that he would teach, mentor and inspire them. He was always happy to share his philosophy, and his outlook on life with anyone who he felt could learn and benefit from them.
On social media, people who could not make it to the memorial service but were affected by Anoop nonetheless paid their respects as well. Some called him a ‘giving figure,’ others referred to him as ‘one in a million,’ and people thanked him for ‘always making us laugh.’
‘On countless times he has given me much of his time and support throughout my career and without prejudice,’ a former colleague said. ‘A true testament to the man who was nothing but a good soul and wanted everyone to win together!’
‘His presentational skills were second to none but were a long way second to his desire to share what he knew, without personal gain, to as many as possible,’ said another. ‘He was a wonderful human being, hugely loved, and will never be forgotten.’
Anoop’s passion and dedication endlessly inspired others in ways beyond their careers.
‘We are all human irrespective of colour, religion or creed,’ said a close friend who wanted to celebrate his birthday in remembrance of Anoop’s life. ‘I promise I will try my best to keep his flame of passion for our profession going!’
Anoop was only 49 years old when he passed, which is much too short of a lifespan for someone as generous, loving and kind. The entire dental profession is mourning Anoop, who was a father, husband, son and a highly respected dentist.
Our prayers and wishes are with his wife Neera, and their two children, Nikita and Rohan.
One particular statement resonated with me: ‘I don’t think anyone, including Anoop, realised the legacy he has left behind.’
No, I think not–but I do know that this community does. Together, we will ensure that others remember his legacy as well.
In tribute to Anoop and the life he led, there will be a sponsored charity walk on 15 September 2019 at Regent’s Park in London. People who cannot be there to walk themselves can donate in Anoop’s name to raise money for Wells on Wheels, a charity that provides a rolling solution to water carriers in India. By walking or donating, you can pay your respects to Anoop in a way that increases the quality of life for others: just what Anoop would have wanted.