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Remembering Garry

February 11, 2019 February 2019 No Comments

I, along with a great many others, attended a very sad funeral recently.  It was a raw and confronting time as we gathered to say farewell to Martinborough community stalwart Garry Jackson; raw because we all knew that Garry had taken his own life and confronting because, as his family shared their grief and bewilderment with us, this fact was not hidden away as in days gone by.

There were many lessons we could learn from reflecting on Garry’s life; compassion, caring, humour and dedication just scratches the surface.  The one that really struck a chord with me though was delivered in a forthright manner by Reverend Andy Eldred.  That lesson was blame.  It is human nature to want to blame someone or something for stuff we are not happy with or cannot explain.

Since time immemorial humans have asked why.  Why does the sun rise, why does it rain?  Why are people that we love and value taken from us when seemingly less worthy individuals seem to stay around for a very long time?  In search of answers we may turn to science or religion.  We may research and read in an effort to find our own answers and something we can believe.

Unfortunately blame and control are very much part of our modern society with its structure and rules but it doesn’t, and never will, stop bad things from happening.  We have hundreds of road rules but crashes still occur.  We have laws that govern everything we do but that doesn’t stop theft, fraud or even relatively trivial things like someone not registering their dog.  We have swimming pools fenced but children still drown.

Finding fault and apportioning blame takes a great deal of energy.  It will not, however, change anything that has already happened so we could instead use that energy to do stuff just as Garry did.  

Garry Jackson was Martinborough’s community backstop.  He looked out for and cared about many people.  Let’s remember him for that.

Adrienne Staples – Regional Councillor

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