Tag Archives: In Memoriam

Remembering Legends: David Bowie & Alan Rickman

I couldn’t believe the news on Monday: David Bowie had passed away of cancer, aged 69. Just now, with Space Oddity still ringing in my ears, I learned that another legend has left us: Alan Rickman died today of cancer. Aged 69.

The world has truly lost two stage and screen legends this week.

Continue reading Remembering Legends: David Bowie & Alan Rickman

In Memoriam: Adam – one year on

Today a year ago, I lost a friend.

Adam was the youngest of my course mates at university. A year ago, he passed away, a young man in his prime. I still don’t know what actually caused his death.

What I do know is that, when news of his passing broke to the group, there was an outpouring of love. It moved me to see how this kid had touched the lives of so many. He was well-liked, as anyone with an Adam-anecdote to share will tell you.

Initial plans were hatched to create a memorial magazine for people who wanted to share what Adam meant to them. I was volunteered as editor, mainly because I do have the software needed. However, responses were abysmal, and some of Adam’s friends tried to prevent others of the group sharing their stories because “Adam wouldn’t have cared about them.” But everybody deals with grief differently, and I would never tell someone they weren’t allowed to grief or share their memories, just because it would piss someone off.

I came under attack as well, from the same people. Cultural differences were glaringly obvious. I come from a place where “life goes on.” You mourn, but you move on. You celebrate the life of the deceased, you share stories far and wide, at the wake and beyond. The memorial magazine was meant to be a written version of those anecdotes that are revealed at wakes. Everyone’s favourite memories. I was accused of profiteering from a “vanity project” (it would have been for free, and I was the only one with layout software) and basically “not grieving right/enough, and not giving it time” and Adam’s “real friends” (read: him) didn’t like the idea. Everybody grieves differently. So I kindly told that person to shove it, and explained that just because my culture deals with death differently, doesn’t mean I’m not mourning a friend.

It’s not a competition.

Two days ago was the fifth anniversary of my graduation. Adam dropped out halfway through our final year. Moving away, we lost touch a bit. But whether we spoke or not in the time leading up to his passing, I considered him a friend to the end. I have no idea whether the same was true for him, but I like to think it was.

Here’s what I wrote about him a year ago: Continue reading In Memoriam: Adam – one year on

Thank you for the stories, Sir Terry.

Author Sir Terry Pratchett passed away on March 12, 2015 aged 66.

The way they announced the news was brilliant. And fitting.

The way Sir Terry's death was announced by his Twitter team
The way Sir Terry’s death was announced by his Twitter team

The link lead to a press release by his publishers.

“Don’t think of it as dying,” said Death. “Just think of it as leaving early to avoid the rush” – Terry Pratchett (1948 – 2015)

Terry Pratchett
Sir Terry Pratchett. Photo by Stefan Servos