By Isaac P. Tourgeman, Ph.D., M.S. ClinPharm

On January 09, 2021, we at Albizu University lost a vital member of our family. Dr. Alfredo Ardila, a world-renowned neuropsychologist, whose humility masked the extent to which his work inspired budding and seasoned professionals in the neuro- and social sciences. While we may not have much control over when we go away, a wise man once said that to live on or be remembered “Do something great or write something great.” And Dr. Ardila very much did both. In honor of who he was, below are some of his last words taken from a poem he wrote, followed by quotes from some of those he will continue to live on through.

Cuando yo me vaya

Cuando yo me vaya no quiero que llores

Quiero que te alegres de lo que vivimos

No te pongas triste no me lleves flores

Recuerde que sigo viviendo en tu vida

Y estaré presente en todos tus días

Entre tus recuerdos y tus alegrías

Seguiré viviendo en tus libros viejos

Entre las canciones que conmigo oias

En los bellos viajes a tierras lejanas

En las reuniones que yo compartía

En la luna blanca y en el sol naciente

En el álbum grande que yo componía

En todas tus penas y tus alegrías

Es largo el camino que fue recorrido

Junto a tu sonrisa y tu compañía

Tu llegaste ser parte de mi vida

Por eso me quedo, me quedo en tu vida

Cuando yo me vaya seguiré viviendo

En tu illusions y en toda tu vida

Cuando yo me vaya no quiero que llores

Recuerda que sigo viviendo en tu vida

When I go away

When I go I do not want you to cry

I want you to be happy about what we lived

Do not be sad do not take me flowers

Remember that I continue living in your life

And I will be present in all your days

Among your memories and your joys

I will continue living in your old books

Among the songs that you heard with me

In the beautiful trips to distant lands

In the meetings that I shared

In the white moon and in the rising sun

In the big album that I composed

In all your sorrows and your joys

The road that was traveled was long

Along your smile and your company

You became part of my life

That’s why I stay, I stay in your life

When I go I will continue living

In your illusions and in all your life

When I go I do not want you to cry

Remember that I continue living in your life

“It is with great sadness that I learned of the recent death of Professor Alfredo Ardila. He was a leader and luminary in our international neuropsychology research community. Dr. Ardila was a much loved instructor whose teaching and research in the field of neuropsychology were infused with his passionate interest for advancing this discipline in Latin America and around the world. I had the privilege of attending many of his conferences throughout my academic and professional training, and his lectures/presentations were incredibly inspiring and thought-provoking. His passing leaves us with deep sadness and unmeasurable appreciation, respect, and admiration for his life’s work and legacy. My thoughts are with his family and everyone whose lives he touched.”

-Dr. Paula Karina Perez, PsyD, LMH

Albizu Graduate

“After taking courses in neuropsychology with Dr. Ardila, I was able to appreciate the immense passion and expertise he demonstrated. As a mentor, he inspired me to complete my dissertation on the topic of bilingualism, and helped me become a published author. The field of neuropsychology lost a great mind, however, he has inspired so many, including myself, and leaves behind students who will carry on his contributions to the fields of neuropsychology and linguistics.”

-Derek Ream, M.S., M.Sc

Albizu Student

“Dr. Ardila’s passion for his craft irradiated in and outside of the classroom. As a student in several of his classes, I was fortunate not only to learn about the intricacies of the human brain but more importantly to experience his contagious passion. Dr. Ardila’s genuineness, warmth, and insatiable curiosity embodied what the best of us can aspire to represent in our service to society. I will hold Dr. Ardila’s lessons in my memory and his humility in my heart for years to come.”

-Hector Patino

Albizu Student

“I am honored to have had the privilege of knowing and learning from Dr. Ardila. I was able to take several classes with him, one of which he taught to a small group of us exclusively in Spanish. He was one of the kindest souls I have had the pleasure of meeting and it is true that his presence will be missed in the halls of Albizu.”

-Jessica Frias, M.S.

Albizu Student

“In the short while I had the privilege of knowing Dr. Ardila, I was able to appreciate what a valued member of the Miami faculty he was.  He was greatly respected by his colleagues and his rapport with his students can only be characterized as impactful.  His profound impact in the field of neuropsychology, which he loved so much is well documented for future researchers and generations of students to use. We at the Miami Campus were very fortunate to have him as a colleague, teacher, and a kind human being.  He will be missed!”

Tilokie Depoo, Ph. D.

Chancellor Miami Campus

“Dr. Ardila was well-known for his multiple scholastic accomplishments; he always managed to be a perfect gentleman”

-Irene M. Bravo, Ph.D

Dean of Academic Affairs

Director – PhD in Human Services

“I will never forget the first day that I met Alfredo Ardila when he came on board to work with our faculty at Albizu University. I was honored that I was going to be working with someone who was so well known in my field of study, Neuropsychology. I was also surprised to learn that he was married to a colleague of mine, Monica Rosselli. On his first day, both him and his wife came to Albizu to tour the facilities and his new office, and they stopped by my office. It was immediately evident to me that the two of them together were a force of love and positive energy. Their bond and support of each other was undeniable. As I got to know Dr. Ardila more, I observed that despite his status in his field, he emanated humility and unconditional acceptance of his colleagues and students. He was the type of professional that I aspire to be. I learned so much from him in the short time that I knew him and I only wish I had more time to be a part of his life. I feel blessed to have known him. Though our interactions were brief, he made a real impact in my life. I will honor his memory and will aspire to emulate him in my own career.”

– Miriam J Rodriguez, PhD

Assistant Professor – PsyD Program

Time can be a fickle thing, slipping through our fingers when we try to grasp it and hovering over us when we try to rid of it. Honoring those whose time has passed may therefore require us to resonate with time through our actions, such that as Dr. Ardila’s last written words expressed those that pass “continue living in your life.”