Malaika Arora on Wendell Rodricks' demise: His belief in me was everything

Updated: Feb 13, 2020, 08:07 IST | Shaheen Parkar, Vinod Kumar Menon, Karishma Kuenzang | Mumbai

Bollywood actors take to social media to express grief over the death of ace designer Wendell Rodricks.

Malaika Arora with Wendell Rodricks. File pic
Malaika Arora with Wendell Rodricks. File pic

Ace designer Wendell Rodricks passed away at the age of 59 on Wednesday in Goa. Bollywood actors expressed grief over his death on social media.

Malaika Arora remembered Rodricks by sharing a throwback picture along with the late designer on Instagram with a post that reads, "A master couturier and his muse [?]..... RIP our dearest @wendellrodricks ....I first sat n cried, n then I sat alone n smiled n laughed, jus thinkin of all the beautiful beautiful memories n moments we shared."

Neeta Lulla, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Rodricks at a party in Colaba
Neeta Lulla, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Rodricks at a party in Colaba

Speaking to mid-day, she said, "It is shocking. I have lost a very close friend and the news is still sinking in. He was my son's [Arhaan] godfather and we had too many memories together. He has been instrumental in my career, especially when I had just started off. His belief in me gave me so much confidence to leap forward in my professional as well as personal life. He was like a brother to Amrita [Arora Ladak, sister] and me. It's beyond shocking for both of us. He's gone too soon."

Film director Madhur Bhandarkar tweeted, "Shocked to hear about the sudden demise of fashion designer, Wendell Rodricks, My heartfelt condolences to his family and dear ones. We will truly miss him. RIP."

Arjun Rampal took to Twitter and said, "This is such sad sad news, a beautiful human and such a talented designer, the fashion industry and the world has lost today. It was such joy whenever I met him. His smile always made me smile, you will be missed, Wendell. Condolences and prayers for all ur loved ones #ripwendell."

Neil Nitin Mukesh too expressed grief over his demise. He tweeted, "Genuinely sad to hear the news of Wendell Rodricks passing away."

Singer Sona Mahapatra remembered Rodricks by sharing a collage of his pictures and tweeted, "Full of love. Full of life. All heart. All soul. A connoisseur. A creator. A pioneer. A change-maker. I feel lucky having known you. @Wendellrodricks you will remain in my heart forever. Refuse to see you any other way than that afternoon we spent in your glorious home in Goa."

Wendell Rodricks' family: He was unwell for a week

Jaspal Singh, Inspector General of Police, Goa, said, "We have been told by the family that he has been not keeping well for the last seven days and was under treatment. The family doctor has arrived at his house and will be certifying the cause of death. Prima facie, it seems to be a natural death."

Asked if there will be an autopsy, Singh said, "If the family doctor certifies the death, we do not have to seek an autopsy, and in this case it doesn't seem to be an unnatural death."

Bruna Abdullah stunned

When mid-day reached out to model Bruna Abdullah, who is currently shooting in Brazil, she was not aware of Wendell's passing.

"I am sorry I am lost for words," she told mid-day. "He was the sunshine in the room! One of the kindest person I have met."

A social activist, too

Born on May 28, 1960, Rodricks was also known as an activist for his contribution to various social causes.

He was also conferred with the Padma Shri in 2014.

He was instrumental in reviving heritage clothes of Goa, such as the Kunbi saree, and bringing resort wear to the limelight.

He also did cameo roles in the 2003 film Boom and Madhur Bhandarkar's Fashion, which released in 2008. He had also written several books on Goa. His funeral will be held at his ancestral village of Colvale today.

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