Community comes together in the face of grief

One way to respond to tragedy and sadness is to band together to honour those we've lost and help others at the same time.

There’s a Czech proverb that says “do not protect yourself from grief by a fence, but rather by your friends.”

And in the past week, members of our community have been gathering as friends — whether they know each other or not — to try to offer some comfort to those suffering loss.

In the face of sadness and tragedy, our community is responding the best way possible — by coming together to help each other while honouring the lives of those we’ve lost.

As soon as they heard about five-year-old Jaedyn Amann’s tragic death at a soccer field in the Yukon, family and friends started setting up a trust fund for parents Tara Hicks and Paul Amann and began planning ways to raise money for the family. Details haven’t been finalized  yet, but there will be a garage sale and beer and burger night. An account has also been set up at the bottle depot. There aren’t many words you can offer at a  time like this, but you can try to help make sure they have one less thing to worry about and show them our support.

Ladysmith lost two very prominent citizens to illness in Pat Edge and Kit Willmot in the last 10 days or so as well. They both contributed so much to the community and were tireless volunteers, giving so much of themselves to help others through many different organizations and groups.

Willmot’s death has also spawned action in the community.

A group of individuals have started Kit’s Last Food Drive on behalf of the Ladysmith Food Bank to raise money and food for an important community service that Willmot was instrumental in founding. Donations can be dropped off at the 49th Parallel Grocery Store and Safeway until Sunday, and donations will be collected at Sunday’s Concerts in the Park performance at Transfer Beach.

The food drive is a way to thank Willmot for all he has done and to do something good for others in his name.

If anything positive can come out of death, it is stories such as these about rallying together.

— The Chronicle