Emru Townsend, 1969-2008

You may have heard the sad news on the radio, or read the brief death notice in today’s Gazette.

However, I think this message from Emru’s sister, Tamu, says it best:

Emru took his last breath just before 10 pm tonight [Tuesday, November 11]. He died peacefully surrounded by his family.

He taught me how to live. He taught me how you are supposed to die.

Emru’s name means RESPECT.

Emru, the person, also means compassion, learning, teaching, sharing, love, integrity, honesty, and inspiration.

He taught a lot of people a lot of things, but he spent 2008 teaching people how to reach out to one another in a whole new way. If you carry some of this forward, it will be a year even better spent.

Thank you for being part of his journey.


Some of you knew Emru, while others, like me, never had a chance to meet him, but we all mourn his loss as a fellow writer, former PWAC member and an altogether great human being. He certainly inspired me throughout his courageous struggle to beat leukemia. Although it ultimately got the better of him, he educated me and many others about stem cell donation and how each of us have the potential to save a life of the many others out there still suffering with this disease. We should all appreciate our health while we have it.

Those of you who knew Emru or were touched by his story are encouraged to write something in the comments section, below. Those of you who would like to send a message of condolence to Emru’s family can leave a comment on the final Heal Emru blog post.

Information regarding memorial services will be posted here as soon as it is available.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Pauline Clift says:

    Dear Emru, the world has lost a sweet, intelligent and compassionate man. I shall miss your gentle smile, Emru.
    My condolences to his family.

  2. Phillipa Rispin says:

    Emru was a lovely person. I’ll miss our marathon phone calls.

    Everyone under age 50: Please register to be a possible stem-cell/bone-marrow donor. Donating is easy for the donor and a priceless gift for the recipient.


  3. Eve Krakow says:

    I remember Emru for his energy, his positive attitude, his friendliness, PWAC Pub Nights, his input while I was on the Quebec chapter exec, his workshop that inspired me to create my first Website, his tech advice. It is so hard to believe that such a dynamic individual is gone. We will miss you, Emru.

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