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On memorialising the young dead

johnboy 30 March 2011 24

butterfly

I went to a funeral yesterday. It was for a young woman called Jacky Clark, she was just 26.

Considering all the news we get about memorials on Clift Crescent, or Canberra Avenue, or the Woden Bus Interchange I think it worth noting the tragic passing of a young person that didn’t require police action on their memorial.

I never got the chance to know her in life. But her husband had asked that a group I’m in attend, so I was there.

Rows of plastic butterflies had been strung from the ceiling of the chapel, which was full to overflowing.

The speakers tried to celebrate her life, but it was desperately sad for having ended so soon.

Having been to the funeral I really wish I’d had the chance to get to know her in life.

Afterwards the butterflies were taken down and everyone was asked to take one home.

I’ve chosen to take my butterfly and put it on my fridge. (My fridge, not anyone else’s)

Every time I see it I’ll remember that Jacky Clark once walked amongst us, and was very much loved by a very great number of people.

I would humbly like to suggest that this is a better form of memorial than a scrawl on the door of the toilet in the Woden Bus Interchange.


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24 Responses to On memorialising the young dead
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clarkannae clarkannae 1:38 pm 12 Apr 11

Jacky Clark was far from a “bogan” – She was the sweetest most genuine person I have ever met, and I had the honor of calling her a sister for the past 5 years (after she married my brother). “johnboy” – thanks for your touching post. It is nice to know that she still managed to touch someone, even after passing. Although dreadfully sad, her funeral was a wonderful celebration of her life, and a beautiful reflection of the type of person Jacky was. A bright butterfly – I will never forget her.

Beserk Keyboard Warrior Beserk Keyboard Warrior 2:32 pm 10 Apr 11

The difference is Jacky Clark wasn’t a bogan.

LSWCHP LSWCHP 12:45 pm 10 Apr 11

johnboy said :

cars are safer, childbirth is safer, compared to even 50 years ago death is comparatively unknown to us now.

Not saying we can’t do better, just that with a bit of historical perspective you realise how astonishingly good things are.

Which probably makes it harder when someone dies anyway.

That’s the point. Things have changed so much over the last century that these days everybody simply expects to live to a ripe old age and death at an early age becomes a huge shock. .

I visited a historic cemetery in San Diego California containing several hundred graves from the 1800’s, and I can’t recall one being over 50. Most of the people had died between 25 and 45.

We’re so lucky to live where we do, and in the time that we do.

fgzk fgzk 8:51 am 10 Apr 11

georgesgenitals said :

KCL said :

KCL said :

Sleaz274 said :

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

why don’t you try resurching the topic!
But i thought your quotes (even if horribly misquoted) to be true and interesting to say the least

[after thought] -the thing is that suiside’s are never or hardly ever reported on in the news so most people are unaware of it

And there are reasons for that.

Reasons that have been questioned. A recent study has found that disusing suicide in the media does not encourage people to take their own life.

georgesgenitals georgesgenitals 8:12 pm 09 Apr 11

KCL said :

KCL said :

Sleaz274 said :

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

why don’t you try resurching the topic!
But i thought your quotes (even if horribly misquoted) to be true and interesting to say the least

[after thought] -the thing is that suiside’s are never or hardly ever reported on in the news so most people are unaware of it

And there are reasons for that.

gospeedygo gospeedygo 7:55 pm 09 Apr 11

KCL said :

Sleaz274 said :

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

why don’t you try resurching the topic!
But i thought your quotes (even if horribly misquoted) to be true and interesting to say the least

I agree with Sleaz274. Poor use of the word epidemic. Suicide isn’t a disease either is depression technically. But I agree that it is a bit of a problem.

KCL KCL 6:48 pm 09 Apr 11

KCL said :

Sleaz274 said :

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

why don’t you try resurching the topic!
But i thought your quotes (even if horribly misquoted) to be true and interesting to say the least

[after thought] -the thing is that suiside’s are never or hardly ever reported on in the news so most people are unaware of it

KCL KCL 6:42 pm 09 Apr 11

Sleaz274 said :

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

why don’t you try resurching the topic!
But i thought your quotes (even if horribly misquoted) to be true and interesting to say the least

Sleaz274 Sleaz274 1:16 pm 05 Apr 11

Suicide – “the most permanent solution to temporary problems”

Said to a big group of my peers at uni by a very well respected man and has stuck with me ever since.

And i believe it was plato – “the dead know one thing; it was better to be alive” (horribly misquoted I’m sure)

Hardly an epidemic however, that’s very alarmist and a poor use of the word.

EvanJames EvanJames 12:04 pm 05 Apr 11

Suicide among young people IS an epidemic, in that, when a kid kills him/herself, there’s often a ripple effect, other kids start committing suicide too, or trying to. Boys are generally more effective at doing the deed, so more of them die.

There was a well documented problem in Kyneton in Victoria a few years back, there was a suicide epidemic among the young people.

If a kid kills himself/herself, start watching their friends, closely.

p1 p1 11:42 am 05 Apr 11

johnboy said :

cars are safer, childbirth is safer, compared to even 50 years ago death is comparatively unknown to us now.

I would like to draw people attention to AIHW’s Australia’s health 2010: in brief report, which gives nice simple trends form many of the more important health impacts on Australians (there is a “not in brief” version for those interested in numbers).

It shows some pretty interesting things, for example this would seem to be at odds with a lot of A Current Affairs episodes which would have you think we are all in danger of becoming extinct.

As JB said though, this might just make it harder for us all when we do have to deal with a death, as we are not used to it.

johnboy johnboy 10:58 am 05 Apr 11

cars are safer, childbirth is safer, compared to even 50 years ago death is comparatively unknown to us now.

Not saying we can’t do better, just that with a bit of historical perspective you realise how astonishingly good things are.

Which probably makes it harder when someone dies anyway.

KCL KCL 10:54 am 05 Apr 11

johnboy said :

Less die young now than ever before in human history.

Hi Johnboy firstly i just want to say what an awsome job you do and i think (in my humble opinion) that you must be one of the most interesting and well informed people in A.C.T. opposed to the mindless robot journo’s at the Canberra Times or the manufactured drivel i hear on the radio news.
But to get back to my point on the young dead, and i’m not a health professional or expert, just your average 30 something citizan, but i think that only reflects infant mortality rates I KNOW that suiside amoungst the young male population of the A.C.T. is in epidemic proportions and then there is cancer which i have lost three friends to that were all around the age of 30 and then there is the epidemic proportions of diabeties and kidney disease amoungst the indiginous population and im not too sure what the road toll reflects…

rottweiler rottweiler 8:31 am 31 Mar 11

It’s not just the young that can be remembered in that way, Mid last year & early this year I lost an uncle and grandmother so people had a small memento I made ribbon pins(much like cancer pins) in their favourite colours to hand out at their final goodbyes.

johnboy johnboy 8:14 am 31 Mar 11

Less die young now than ever before in human history.

KCL KCL 5:12 am 31 Mar 11

what a beautiful way for her to keep living on in peoples hearts -but we MUST respect how everyone chooses to grieve. I, myself have lost 11 close friends and my twin brother and it is so differant everytime. Perhaps its the topic of why so many good die young that we should be addressing?

fun size fun size 12:45 am 31 Mar 11

I knew Jacky, but not very well. I’m not surprised that the chapel was so full, and I dearly wish that I could have been there. Thanks for your kind words.

EvanJames EvanJames 3:11 pm 30 Mar 11

I fervently hope that normal, decent people like Jacky are still the norm, and that the law-breaking anti-social bogans are in the minority and abnormal.

blowers blowers 2:47 pm 30 Mar 11

Someone needs to get a Journo to publish this story! It is an excellent way to remember someone without upsetting others. Thankyou for sharing

carnardly carnardly 1:42 pm 30 Mar 11

and so say all of me.

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