Wednesday, August 27, 2008

never give up

last night I was walking home from my first visit to lakewood's only bookstore (I'm happy to report it's an independent bookstore!) and noticed a flag flying at half-mast. the sight of this flag in front of the roosevelt elementary school as the sun was setting brought back the shock and disbelief I felt last week up on learning the news that our much loved stephanie tubbs-jones had suffered from a catastropic brain aneurysm. stephanie died just a few weeks short of her 59th birthday - yet another example of the good dying young. what a tragic loss and such a tragedy for our city and our country.

I had the pleasure and good fortune to attend many events where stephanie spoke. not surprising, she was a tireless and passionate advocate for many of the causes and concerns that I feel strongly about - health care for all, protecting people against predators - whether these predators were lenders, adults preying on children, thugs carrying guns, systems which fail to count votes, or presidents who invade countries and wage war under false pretenses, to name just a couple of shared interests.

in 1998 stephanie was elected as the first african-american woman to the u.s. house of representatives from ohio. she was my representative for the first seven years of my time in cleveland - I was proud of stephanie and felt I had someone who truly represented my concerns and interests. (three years ago we moved to the west side; although I left stephanie's district I'm happy to be able to say I can still claim a representative who represents my interests. I now live in dennis kucinich's district.) I spoke with ms. tubbs-jones many times over the years even though I know she didn't know me from adam (or would it be eve?), I always felt she remembered meeting me before. she had remarkable charisma and an amazing ability to connect.

I was happy to hear hillary and others honoring stephanie during their speeches. I understand there was a more formal rememberance of stephanie given by the congressional black congress. unfortunately this took place before I tuned in...

I'll be glued to the tube watching the dnc tonight and tomorrow and thanks to a comment from reya the other day, we'll be having a little potluck gathering tomorrow. go obama!

august 27 is the birthday of the talented and beautiful yolanda adams. in honor of stephanie and since I'm thinking a great deal about the next two months and our upcoming obamanation - here's one of yolanda's inspiring gospel tunes, never give up:

8 comments:

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

Her passing sounds like a tragic loss - but as you say, it's the good that die young and I get the impression from your post that she did an enormous amount of good. What a wonderful tribute, Mouse.

intact said...

Lovely.

tut-tut said...

We have lost a similarly tireless member of the school board here, an African American woman in her fifties as well . . .

R.L. Bourges said...

so, so sorry about Tubbs Jones. People who are good at what they do are precious in every sphere - but a good politician is a cause for honoring and celebrating. I'm sure she'll be in a lot of people's thoughts during the ride to obamanationhood.

best as usual from Graulhet

dennis said...

Dennis agrees with abso vanilla... Dennis had no idea you've lived in Cleveland for so many years. It doesn't take long to become a part of the community, though, when you're a caring person.

Megan said...

I agree with Dennis.

Professor Montblanc said...

this is sad.

WAT said...

Thank you for your tribute to Stephanie. She was an avid Hillary Clinton supporter and I enjoyed watching her on TV when she was on. She looked like a joyful lady.