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by Michael Negele
(* 11 August 1917 - † 21 September 2007)
Only very late we received the sad news: Dr Jean Mennerat, the doyen of our association and the greatest French chess collector of our age is no longer alive. We don’t know anything about his last months, unfortunately we had lost contact already since August 2006.
After many years of active life as a doctor in Paris he had settled with his wife in the small village of Amancey in the French Jura Mountains where he lived a very secluded life devoted in great parts to the extension of his collection.
He had entrusted only few with his address, and certainly the number of those who were permitted to reach his "Holy of Holies" was still much smaller. Christophe Bouton belongs to this small circle of chosen ones, he reports in his obituary (worth reading, see Echecs64 blog), that tough preliminary negotiations were required at that time to get to an on-site interview with Dr Mennerat and to have a look at his very impressive collection. It is known that C. Bouton reported on this unique event in New In Chess 2005/5.