On Saturday Sept. 18 The St. Albert Gazette lost one of its more prolific letter writers. Elizabeth (Liz) Allchin — a mother, a wife, an actor, an activist, a community engager, and a friend to so many — passed away.
Liz was an active member of the St. Albert community, and on many occasions would use this publication to speak her mind on issues that faced seniors, as well as all residents of St. Albert and the surrounding areas.
She wasn’t afraid to stand up when she saw something that wasn’t right, and if a problem presented itself, she would do everything she could to solve it.
In a world where we more often look down at our phones, she looked up and out. Where many of us choose to tacitly accept the malaise of everyday life, she refused. Whether it was a fight for people, a fight against a proposed rule, or a fight against a person, you could always count on her to be there.
Is her passing sadder than others who pass away? A life is a life. Each of us has people who like us, who love us, who want the best for us, and when a life ends, there is a sadness for those who remain behind — an emptiness that that person is gone. Yes, there are fond memories. Yes, there are pictures, or perhaps video and audio, but those are poor substitutes for the real thing.
So, what can be taken away from her passing, or from the passing of any loved one? For me I want to take her zeal for standing up when something wrong happens. To speak or to fight for those who might not be able to speak or fight for themselves. To look beyond my phone and try and make things better for others, and not to accept the world as it is, but how I can make it better.
For anyone who knew Liz, I am sorry for your loss. To those who read her letters, and whether you said to yourself “I agree,” or perhaps said, “I disagree,” thank you for reading them. Thank you for having an opinion, and if her words made you get up and get actively involved, then I am truly grateful for that. I know she would be, too.
Kerry Allchin, New Westminster, B.C.