We are grieving the sudden loss of our wonderful, sensitive, fun and nature-loving, truth-seeking, incisive, inclusive, egalitarian, humble, unpretentious friend. She will always remain our anchor and our sail. As we organized actions to try to stop the pollution by powerful fossil fuel companies, she told us to “Be strategic. Be strategic.”
She was a spokesperson at meetings and toxic tour and rally events over the past decade. She road the bus with us and the CAUSE youth all night to San Francisco. She was given 30 seconds, like the rest of us, to tell the Commission we oppose another polluting power plant on our beach. She spoke the day before her death at a Water Control Board hearing to ensure that Boeing clean up the radioactive contamination in the soil at the Santa Susana Field Lab near Simi Valley to the most stringent level. She worked on county legal matters and visited the Inlakesh Dancers to give them a certificate of recognition earlier in the day of this fatal accident.
As Oxnard Mayor Pro-Temp she called on Governor Newsom to “use his super-powers”, to curb fossil fuel pollution and support clean energy before its too late. Here is the link to that recording.
We choose to imagine Carmen rejoicing with loved ones and great leaders at the highest reaches of the heavenly realms, her spirit ready as always to lead by listening and showing up and offering cogent observations about protecting what we all should value most. Now we will have to listen with a little different ears for her wisdom and encouragement.