29 October 2015

Death Becomes Us

Such modern fuss is made regarding Halloween, the eve of All Hallows Day, otherwise known as All Saints Day in the liturgical calendar. Candy and costumes and zombies have taken over. However inclined you feel about the hereafter, the following more inclusive day receives less attention in most quarters: November 2nd ― All Souls Day. I leave you to your own theological convictions or research.

All Souls is a day when I remember, among others, the stars that flashed across the genealogy world's northern firmament. A few were passing acquaintances; most were friends. All had my deepest respect for their contributions to our educational growth, and above all, their warmth and enthusiasm for sharing.

Just some of our Canadian losses since the millennium; spare a thought and/or a prayer?

René Jetté 3 May 1944‒18 May 2003

Danny Johnson 25 August 1953‒22 February 2005

Sandra Devlin 28 November 1946‒1 February 2006

Ryan Taylor 18 June 195025 September 2006

Ken Aitken 1947‒21 April 2007

Paul McGrath 1959‒23 October 2008

Clifford Collier 1929‒21 February 2011

Joan Miller 7 March 1953‒4 January 2013

Brian Gilchrist 7 April 1956‒1 May 2014

Elizabeth Hancocks 1928‒13 February 2015

Otherworldly as they are now, may they be free of age and illness and sorrow. A healthy sense of humour goes hand in hand with the best genealogical minds. They won't mind if I josh a little:
At my age, I'm often asked if I am frightened of death and my reply is always, I can't remember being frightened of birth.
~ Peter Ustinov

Or wax sentimental:
And I believe my voice will sound / Upon the whispering wind / So long as even one remains / Among those I call "friend." ~ Johnny Hathcock

© 2015 Brenda Dougall Merriman


Susan Barry said...

Brenda, I attended DNA conference with Joan Miller in 2012, and we became friends, but I moved and got busy....so was unaware of her death.... definitely worth prayers and thoughts..... Thanks for your blog

Geneaseeker said...

Brenda, thank you so much for reminding us all of these losses to the genealogical community. I had not recalled there being so many. Our more recently recognized Canadian genealogists are taking up the torch. I look forward to opportunities to personally support them and promote their skills and events.
Shirley Sturdevant