This letter is to inform all Iranians in the world the passing of a star in the Iranian Community, Dr. Goga Khalatbari, Philosopher, Poet, Humanitarian, Man of Peace, Man of God, and True Iranian to his last days on this earth. After 13 years of battling cancer, my Uncle Goga went to the heavens on Friday, October 3, 2008, at 1:30 a.m. because God wanted this poet angle back in the Heavens. Whenever we see the shiniest star, we need to stop and say a prayer for this great man.
Dr. Goga Khalatbari is survived by his children Bebe, Susie, and Jeffery Khalatbari. He is also survived by his daughter-in-law Natalie Khalatbari, and five grandchildren, Bruce, Kimya, Hunter, Yasmine, and Austin. He is also survived by his siblings, Brother Adelfar Khalatbari, and sisters, Simin Behbahani, Farishteh Khalatbari, Farkhondeh Khalatbari.
There are many things about this great man that all of us must know. He was a poet of all Iranians, the first man in Iran to rise up and fight for the democracy and freedom for all Iranian people. He fought the oppressive government to free the sale of oil in the open market for all Iranians. He was the first Iranian to rise up with his poems and over 600 books; he touched the lives of all of us. He was the first Iranian in the United States to have his own newspaper called the Iran Express in the 1980’s.
My Uncle Goga left his beloved Iran in the 1950’s because he knew that in order to publish his words, he needed to be in a free country so he could lead with his pen and his words and touch the lives of many Iranians. My Uncle Goga stood for all that is right in the Iranian world and never criticized or said bad things about anyone regardless of religion, country, or culture. In the 1960’s, he was one of the first Iranians in the United States to stand beside a great president, known as John F. Kennedy, and speak to him in front of thousands of people in Washington, D.C. about human rights and freedom in all the world. My Uncle was a man who always worked to free Iran with his poems, his words, and his smile. He loved his family and his people.
On his last days on this beautiful earth he said to me, “My nephew Ali, you must carry the torch of freedom and democracy through Iran. We must free our people; we must give equal rights to all the women in Iran and the Middle East. We must help the poor and feed the hungry. And you my nephew must continue the work of peace. Every generation has a face that stands for the good of the people such as Dr. Martin Luther King, John F. Kennedy, Gandhi and Dr. Mohammad Mosaddeq. These people always come and touch the world with their words and actions, and peaceful demeanor. This generation’s face was my Uncle Goga Khalatbari. We must never give up our rights to be free, or our pens to stop writing; our hearts to stop signing; or our minds to stop seeing all the beauty of the people. We the people must not ever let the memories of our philosophers, poets, writers, freedom lovers, and lovers of our country of Iran to be taken from us. Every person knows when their time is up on this beautiful earth. My Uncle, Dr. Goga, knew his last days were coming but he always had a smile on his face and he went out of his way to help the people. When he went out of this world he went out like a tiger. We are all born in this world for a purpose and we are all children of the heavenly lights. We come in and see the lights and we go out and follow the lights to the heavenly skies. We unite in the afterlife with our families and friends.
May God rest your soul in the heavens my Uncle and may all that you dreamed about on earth come true for all; and may God in the heavens keep you safe until we all meet again. For now, I will see you every night, in the skies, as a shining star that you have always been.
God bless you and love from all of us.