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Obit: Manni Lennartz, restaurateur, musician

alanabit 18 Mar 11 - 03:07 PM
olddude 19 Mar 11 - 11:36 AM
alanabit 19 Mar 11 - 12:28 PM
catspaw49 19 Mar 11 - 12:59 PM
CheshireCat 21 Mar 11 - 06:07 AM
GUEST 31 Mar 11 - 09:48 AM
alanabit 31 Mar 11 - 04:51 PM
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Subject: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: alanabit
Date: 18 Mar 11 - 03:07 PM

The news was not totally unexpected, but I would never have been ready for it. Manni Lennartz, friend to just about any folk musician - Greek, Spanish, Irish, Brit, American or from Mars, who played in Cologne - died yesterday morning. A measure of the man is that those people, who could have been his fiercest rivals, were actually his closest friends. He used to go on holiday with Nico, a Greek restaurant owner, with whom he also played Greek folk music together. Manni was a Cologne original, proud of his Cologne roots and a Kölner to the core. But he was of the generous kind, who was a friend to everyone, who wanted to share his beloved city. I have busked and done gigs at his wonderful restaurant for over thirty years. I have also been to many great nights of music there. Manni was one of my best friends when I was recovering from the Hepatitis B, which almost killed me, back in 1986. His generosity was legendary - and in that year, when I was convalescing, he never allowed me to pay more than five marks. When I had guests over from Britain, he would inevitably join us for the last half hour and insist that we joined him for a shot. I experienced and saw so much kindness from the man, that it is impossible to recount a fraction of it.
He survived a brain tumor a couple of years ago at the expense of an eye, half his face, much of his voice and a huge weight loss. Somehow he managed to return. He is absolutely irreplaceable. A part of this great city is gone.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: olddude
Date: 19 Mar 11 - 11:36 AM

I am so sorry Alan, I just lost a very close friend of mine Rick Martin the hockey player for Buffalo ... I am still reeling from losing Rick ... I am so sorry to hear this new my friend

Please take care of yourself


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: alanabit
Date: 19 Mar 11 - 12:28 PM

I just feel that tinge of regret that I could not stay and have that last shot with him, when Ina and I were in his restaurant a few weeks ago. I had a stomach upset from a reaction to Aspirin and I knew it would be a close run thing to get home in time. I thought we could do it another time. I never knew it was our last chance.
He knew I loved him - we all did - and I believe he was at peace with himself. It reminds me of something we all know but often forget, which is that every time we meet someone it could be the last. I will be making just that little bit more effort to value all the other good people in my life.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: catspaw49
Date: 19 Mar 11 - 12:59 PM

Sorry alan.....that second post of yours speaks an absolute truth old friend. Seems to be a bit of the topic today.............Great post.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: CheshireCat
Date: 21 Mar 11 - 06:07 AM

Manni went out of his way to make this lonely young expat feel welcome in Cologne in the 80s and he did it all over again when I returned to Germany 20 years later. A few of us will be lucky enough to meet one or two like Manni in the course of our lives; none of us will meet many like him. Return visits to Cologne will never be quite the same without this unique man.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: GUEST
Date: 31 Mar 11 - 09:48 AM

We very much know what you are talking about - it was among our
favorite living rooms in Cologne!
More than 30 years - we now know what we lost!
It was an impressive event last Saturday - more than 300 people
came along to say goodbye to Manni - and after this we had Kölsch!
Agi


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Subject: RE: Obit: Manni Lennartz, restarateur, musician
From: alanabit
Date: 31 Mar 11 - 04:51 PM

Yes it was a great turnout and I saw several old friends, who I had not seen for years. Gabi, Manni's wife, was magnificent and the sun came out to say goodbye to him. His ashes will be scattered on a mountain in his beloved Greece.
A familiar person stopped me to shake my hand at the funeral. I had not known that Nico had given up his excellent Diogenes Restaurant four years previously and returned to Greece. He had flown back in for the funeral though, bless him. He looked well and his wonderful brown eyes radiated warmth as they always did. My God I will miss Manni, but he will live on in us.
I wonder if we knew each other back then in the Tinnef days, Agi? There were so many great characters around!


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