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Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,049
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Major_AS_Kicker
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Hi Sue,

Thank-you for your kind words... Lizzy fought hard and long...she never gave up despite her pain...but I am relieved that she can rest now...that she is in a peaceful place now....

she even kept a little alter of all the special gifts... tokens and cards that people sent her...it gave her strength and made her smile knowing she was thought of and loved...

After having known Lizzy and all she experienced...fighting two battles...cancer and AS...I can never complain...for we often spoke of pain ...but we always concluded that...to feel it...still means...we are still alive... living life...the good with the bad...

It's good to hear from you I apologize to you and all for my slow replies...I am not on the computer like I used to be...for many reasons...but I do my best...so please bare with me...

I hope you are doing well Sue
peace & love
Kathy




People will forget what you say
People will forget what you do
But people will never forget, how you made them feel
- Maya Angelou -

Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 3,670
Royal_AS_kicker
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Dear Kathy,

Thank you for letting us know about Lizzy's passing. How very tragic that someone so vibrant and beautiful leave this world so soon.

I'm just gutted to hear about this, I must have missed it when you posted about her illness, so I'm hearing about her diagnosis and passing all at the same time. So sad.

Nice to see you though, even if it's only a temporary stop. You've been missed.

Love,
Jeanna

Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 7,427
Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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Addicted_to_AS_Kickin
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Hello Kathy..
I am so very sorry to hear of Lizzy's passing...
My heart goes out to you and Lizzy's family... She was a very courageous woman and is free from pain. I know this will be a difficult time but your wonderful memories are what will help you smile more and hurt less with time...

Take care my friend..you all are in my thoughts and prayers...


Joined: Jan 2003
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Major_AS_Kicker
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Hi Jeanna,

Your very sweet as always and I thank you for your heartfelt words...for Lizzy...and for me...

She was indeed a beautiful… vibrant and spunky lady…and she never…never gave up…she was always making plans for the future…she had wonderful creative ideas…not many people here would know that she was a strong advocate for those with disabilities…I was very proud of her and in awe of the energy she used for this good….this link will give you all just a glimpse of one of her passions…

http://manoeuvre.org/resources/archives/news/2007/07/elizabeth-jane-dixon

And Jeanna… I do hope your new life…with marriage and a career in medicine… is bringing you much joy and fulfillment…I have a niece who was recently diagnosed with AS… and she is also going on to medical school

Just goes to show that although AS is a part of us… it does not…and should not ever… define us…

peace & love
Kathy




People will forget what you say
People will forget what you do
But people will never forget, how you made them feel
- Maya Angelou -

Joined: Jan 2003
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Thank you Angie….I so appreciate your sincere words…I know they come from your heart…and I always remember you as having a very big heart

My memories of Lizzy are so positive and wonderful that I still have to remind myself she is gone…in the physical sense… but just the other day I received the last card I had sent her…and that was a reality check for sure...”return to sender”…It’s weird…I don’t quite know what to do with it…it’s only paper...words on paper… funny how something so small and insignificant in the scheme of things…can only make one stop and think…

Thanks again and take good care Angie
peace and love
Kathy




People will forget what you say
People will forget what you do
But people will never forget, how you made them feel
- Maya Angelou -

Joined: Jan 2003
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I just received this via email.... from Lizzy's dear friend Diana...I told her I would post it here in KA...as I felt it would be a way for all those who didn't know her ...to 'see' her

"This was in the Sun a few days ago written by a Moira MacDonald - what an amazing tribute, and a statement on how much a teacher can affect childrens lives. Cheers to the teachers in the group."

and the letter goes as follows....

If we're lucky we've had at least one high school teacher we've happily never forgotten.

Sometimes they are slightly subversive, seeming to toe the line but, once the classroom door is closed, engaging with their students in a joyful, unspoken conspiracy of true learning.

Liz Dixon, one of my high school English and drama teachers, was such an instructor.

We met when I was 16, entering my third year at a Scarborough alternative school. Liz was in her mid-twenties and new. Our alternative school already attracted the subversives, although the board bureaucrats and career ladder-climbers did their best to sink their neutralizing claws into such an idea.

It didn't take us long to figure out Liz was the real thing. She drove a boat-like magenta car she named "Heart of Darkness" after my then-boyfriend studied the Joseph Conrad novel with her. It was apropos too because the car often ferried her rock band members to night-time gigs, as evidenced by the Schooner beer empties we'd see when she gave us rides home from school. She had long brown hair and milky skin but her voice carried a bluesy, Janis Joplinesque rumble that erupted whenever she sang. She could sing.

When it came to literature, Liz was no snob. Anything good was fodder for her class -- King Lear, The Diary of Vaslav Nijinsky, Charles Bukowski's skid-row poetry, Jethro Tull lyrics. Mostly it had to have heart. When the Grade 13s read Ken Kesey's, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, she made them each choose a character to be for a day. Liz took the part of the controlling Nurse Ratchit. As teenagers, several of us were already bordering on madness. It was nice to earn credit for it.

She brought real writers into our tiny school. There was Roger Caron, the bank robber-turned-author (later turned robber again). There were street poets. Some were her friends.

Drama with Liz was no Mickey Mouse course. By the time she was done, you not only knew the play. You'd also acted at least part of it on-stage, worked on the set, and slogged through countless weekends and weeknights of rehearsals with her sitting on a chair in the middle of the gymnasium, a fierce look on her face, pulling on a carton of egg nog and giving us relentless director's notes on blocking gaffes, how to dig deeper into the part and getting the lines right. Several of us went on to careers in theatre, writing and the arts.

Knights, fools and wenches

The Renaissance Festival was our final production. We wrote a rough, broad script, found music to sing, period costumes to borrow and worked on character roles. Then one warm evening we took it into the Rouge Valley and frolicked as knights, fools, wenches and ugly princesses for several hours, moving among various sites we'd marked out earlier.

Our audience moved with us. Mead was consumed and Liz brought along her friends from the bagpipe funk band Rare Air to accompany us. It was unforgettable.

In the year before I graduated, Liz was experiencing the first symptoms of what would be a lifelong struggle with a severe form of arthritis. It quickly fused her neck, and caused painful joint swellings. She soldiered along, took a job where she was to make sure other teachers were teaching from the correct reading list (we laughed) but eventually went on disability. Then she went to theatre school. As the disease crippled her body her spirit kept thrusting through. An experimental drug gave her relief in more recent years.

Liz died on July 28 at age 49. On top of the debilitating arthritis, she'd been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Shakespeare would surely chalk that one up as a tragedy.

She often talked as a teacher about the importance of always "looking for the magic," in every avenue of expression and experience.

That lesson won't get you a diploma but it helped me get a life.

• You can e-mail Moira MacDonald at moiramacdonald@rogers.com




People will forget what you say
People will forget what you do
But people will never forget, how you made them feel
- Maya Angelou -

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