December 2, 1954 – May 20, 2001
Oil was one of the loves of Mike’s life. He told me OIL stood for Oil is life.
Mike had the deepest love for his family of anyone I knew. He loved the business that he and Paulette built after his father passed away.
He also loved to race cars.
On May 20, 2001 my life changed in a way from which I will never recover. No, I am not a member of Mike Gagliardo’s intimate family. No, I would never begin to think my pain and anguish is even close to what the Gagliardo family has endured.
When I received the news that fateful day, my heart sank and my mind began to race through all my memories and experiences with Mike, though I had only known Mike a short time.
Our first meeting (in person) was on a flight headed to Europe. We spent 10 days traveling around the Mediterranean. After numerous trips together, we developed a joint venture: AMD Oil Sales.
As was typical with Mike, he often had big plans and ideas. This business was not one of them! In fact, AMD actually started without Mike’s involvement.
On a plane ride from Ayvalik to Istanbul the original business plan was drawn up (in spite of the fact that Mike was actually so terrified of flying that he barely listened; ironic, considering his penchant for racing cars at ridiculous speeds.) At first, the venture was only “AD” OIL SALES LLC. But, after thinking about it for a few weeks, Mike decided he would become a part of this group, not because he thought it was a great idea, but because he trusted in the people that were involved.
As usual, he threw his whole powerful mind into thinking about the possibilities. His energy and passion for the things he loved were boundless. We had so many plans and aspirations …
I think of him often and often hear him when I need guidance. Mike, we miss you.
May he rest in peace.