Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Yesterday, I received an email from Aaron Deepak, father of North American Youth Champion 2009 – CM Deepak Aaron from New York, it was an article written by his son’s high school newspaper. To the ordinary eye, the article was one more “feel good” story, like the ones we routinely get when we share in the life experiences of other chess players. However what captivated me about the article was the picture centered in the written narration.

No, it was not a vain attempt at self adulation. You see, minutes before the closing ceremony, my marketer’s brain was thinking about a certain type of picture that would convey the moment. I was in the lobby of the hotel when I asked my daughter Faith to get four sheets of white paper and to write the following words on each sheet: BRAZIL 2010 OR BUST.

I rearranged the seating arrangements for the “epic pose” and quickly people began taking pictures with the four gentlemen holding their signs. I felt this picture would express the moment to the readers of CHESS LIFE ONLINE as well as those in our blog – what shallow vision. Underneath Deepak’s high school article picture the following inscription appeared:,

I decided to click on it and within a split second I was transported from North America to India, in cyberspace of course.

I was in search of something written about Deepak in this Indian Federation chess blog. I just could not find what I was looking for… when suddenly at the bottom right hand column, under the October 7th dateline I read “AARON LEGACY CONTINUES”.

After clicking on the header, I proceeded to read no so much about Deepak but about his father Aaron and his achievements in his younger years. My mind traveled back to Mazatlan to when I met Aaron, he spoke about his chess past but my ear was not so keen in remembering everything he told me.

It was all coming back to me as I read the article.

For an instance I felt a sense of pride in knowing this remarkable father, a man who would wait for his son to finish playing and in a calm fashion inquire on Deepak’s results.

The word “LEGACY” jumped at me from the All Indian Chess Federation website.


In our current times, I do not think for a second that our younger generations know what that word means. As a matter of fact, I do not think our current generation knows the meaning to the word either. Therefore, I decided to put the internet to good use and look up the word.


Main Entry: 1leg·a·cy

Pronunciation: \ˈle-gə-sē\

Function: noun

Inflected Form(s): plural leg·a·cies

Etymology: Middle English legacie office of a legate, bequest, from Anglo-French or Medieval Latin; Anglo-French, office of a legate, from Medieval Latin legatia, from Latin legatus

Date: 15th century

1 : a gift by will especially of money or other personal property : bequest
2 : something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past ,


The second definition really touched a sensitive wire in me. What legacy was I leaving behind to my daughters? Would one day someone write the same about me when referring to Faith or Claudia?

I have never had the honor of meeting I.M. Manuel Aaron, one of India’s first international masters, Aaron’s father, and Deepak’s grandfather but I learned a valuable lesson – a good tree will seed good seeds to harvest regardless if it is the Indian sub-continent or the North American Continent – it does not matter.

That is legacy.


Aaron Legacy continues...
By Arvind Aaron

Chennai-born Deepak Aaron won the North American Youth Chess Championship in the Under-16 category that concluded this week at Mazatlan in Mexico. Deepak had represented United States there. By virtue of this triumph, Deepak, eldest grandson of India's first International Master Manuel Aaron will play in the Pan American Games in Brazil 2010. He also became a Candidate Master.

Deepak, born on June 9, 1994 at Chennai to Ashok Aaron and Joy Pramila is a prodigious student living in New York state near Albany. His father Ashok Aaron had finished runner-up in the Indian National Sub-Junior and won an Open Tournament at Tal Chess Club in Chennai in his chess playing days. He had also helped Madras University win the All India Inter-University Championship at Bodh Gaya in 1985.

Deepak had been training with GM Kaidanov and his grandfather Manuel Aaron. He had plenty of domestic success in the New York area but this is his major success. Deepak and his mother joined his father in the United States in September 1996. Like other boys of his age, he likes basketball and video games. Deepak's trainer for opening preparation is with Israeli GM Ronen Har - Zvi, a former world under - 16 champion.

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