Wendell Rodricks was not just Indian fashion’s leading light, he was also a talent scout-house, best friend, confidante, personal groomer all rolled in one big happy individual, who had the warmest eyes and a smile that could melt any heart. The feisty Goan passed away at his beautiful house, yesterday. He was 59. Wendell can be single-handedly credited for cherry picking some of the most confident, stunning and successful ladies we have had on the Indian and international runways. His biggest and most sparkling finds till date, remain Malaika Arora and Waluscha De Sousa.
Waluscha, a fellow Goan, was discovered by Wendell, when she was all of 16. “He was a good soul who wanted to help everybody, he was your go-to person, if you needed anything. I could never forget our first meeting. He was scouting for local talent within Goa for a huge fashion show with renowned names like Malaika Arora, Ujjwala Raut, Madhu Sapre, Nina Manuel. My friend thought I had a fair chance, so she asked me to apply. She put eye-liner, make-up for me, I had no make-up of my own. I went and met Wendell in my school dress and the rest as they say is history.” ALSO READ: Wendell Rodricks Demise: Designer's Muse Malaika Arora 'Sat And CRIED'; Anushka Sharma Says 'He Gave Me Courage To Move To Mumbai'
Walusca recalls how Wendell was like a “proud parent” and a “flagbearer of all things Goa,” especially talent from within the beautiful idyllic and madly exciting beach wonderland. “Every time a talent was discovered in Goa, he was proud. He believed that there was a lot of talent within Goa, he wanted to discover it and present it to the world,” reminisces the lady. “He literally taught me everything from how to put nail paint on, how to sit, how to stand,” adds Waluscha.
Wendell was a proud husband to Jerome Marrel. The much-in-love couple spent 25 years together and made a beautiful life and home in Goa. The two were fond of good food, travel and hosting their loved ones. Waluscha remembers the last time she met them, “I had lunch with him and Jerome at their house. After which, we did the same thing, we always do, which is, taking his boat out. We went down the river and watched the sunset, it was very beautiful and calming. We spotted crocodiles, he knew the exact spot where we would spot them, he also knew all about the birds, their names, the sounds they would make,” recalls Waluscha.
Waluscha who was Shah Rukh Khan’s co-star in Fan (2016), fondly remembers the famous ‘Oye Bubbly’ ad for a cola brand she did alongside the superstar back in the day and how it was Wendell’s sheer motivation that made it possible. “He discovered me when I was 16, by 17 I had moved to Bombay. There was an audition for a Cola commercial with Shah Rukh Khan going on at that time. I had fever, I was very sick to leave the house and I told him, ‘I won’t be able to go for it.’ I clearly remember what he said, ���Stop being such a Goan’. So, I went, Farrokh Chothia did a mock shoot and based on that I got selected.”
It seems Wendell passed doing what he liked most – his work. “He had been working on his museum from quite some time and he was very passionate and driven about it. Since a day or so, he had been feeling a little low, nothing major, just a tummy upset. That was followed by a massive, massive heart attack,” the actress chokes up.
SpotboyE offers deepest sympathy and condolences to the Rodricks’ family and their close friends. RIP, Dear WR!
Image Source:- instagram/waluschaa/ ashley_rebello/ wendellrodricks, frimija, fhmindia, bhaskarlive, wikipedia
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