Obituaries

Karen Merritt and Owen Clarke

Brian Candeland and Ann Were
Mon 11 Apr 2016

Obituary: Karen Merritt by Brian Candeland, Chair, North West Green Party

We are greatly saddened to hear of the death of Karen Merritt. Karen was a long-time member of Blackpool Green Party, and was recently most active in opposing fracking in the North West as an Anti-Fracking Nana.

She was also Internal Communications Coordinator on the North West Green Party Committee and produced the regional newsletter between 2013 and 2015.

Emily Heath, North West Coordinator during those years, said: "I really appreciated her contributions to NWGP. She was a gentle, deeply committed and reliable person, and will be very much missed."?

Veteran Green Party campaigner and Anti-Fracking Nana Anne Power added: "Karen was always a very thoughtful and kind person; so tragic that we have lost her."?

We send our sincere condolences to Karen's family and friends.

Obituary: Owen Clarke by Ann Were

Owen Clarke was a truly remarkable man. He was a member of the Green Party almost from the beginning and a tireless campaigner for a better world, who was volunteering right up to the end. One of his proudest moments was when, after many years of campaigning, he was elected on to Pontypool Town Council in 2004. He remained a serving councillor at the time of his death.

Over the years, Owen served the Green Party as convener of Disputes Resolution Committee, Wales representative on GPRC and the Wales Membership Secretary. He also mailed out
bulk issues of Green World. Natalie Bennett recalls that he stood in the shower with his packages to make sure they were waterproof!

A keen conference attendee, Owen only missed one conference in recent years, last spring when he had devoted himself to caring for his sick wife in her last days, even though they had been separated for over 20 years.

As Convener of DRC, Owen liked to attend GPRC meetings and would usually stay with a local member for the weekend. On one occasion he failed to arrive at his host's house having lost his host's telephone number and spending the night in the lobby of a bank - a lesser person would have gone home!

My own personal memories of Owen are the late night chats when he called at my house on his way home from the midlands, frequently turning up at around 10.00pm for a cup of coffee, and not leaving until midnight. I've no idea what the neighbours thought!

Above all, Owen was a good man. He unstintingly gave his time and energy to help others. We will all miss this compassionate, stubborn Irishman.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed – Mahatma Gandhi