"I was in awe of him," struggle stalwart Ahmed Kathrada says about Nelson Mandela when he first encountered him as a 16-year-old; 68 years later, he still is, and his grief at the passing of his friend is profound and discernable.
But together with fellow Robben Islander, Laloo Chiba, they remembered and celebrated the life of their comrade and friend in the best way they could - by sharing with the world the stories of their time together. Their banter and anecdotes were tender, sometimes funny, occasionally shocking and deeply moving.
The memorial service hosted by the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation was one of thousands of prayer and remembrance events for Madiba on Sunday as the world continues to honour his legendary life.
Former president Nelson Mandela sent a note to his friend and comrade Ahmed Kathrada four years ago. It read:
Our warmest congratulations on the occasion of your eightieth birthday. We have spoken often of the long road we have travelled together.
But Madala, you would agree that to find ourselves still going strong after nearly a decade into the twenty-first century is extraordinary. Your friendship has been a great resource to me in...