Flights of Angels

A lovely, generous friend of us all, Michelle Goodrich, has died. She has shared extraordinarily freely and effectively with friends and strangers alike, and has done so with grace and good cheer from painful circumstances. She no longer knows the limitations that pressed upon her; she is free.

You may meet her at her site, as you learn some of the ingenious, standards-compliant devices she offered to make the Web a more beautiful, more useful medium. You can get to see more behind the scenes in her interview with Frank Paynter (thank you, Frank, for bringing out her answers and saving them for us).

There’ something problematically passive-aggressive about using someone’s death to extort sentiment or action from people. Our friends don’t die to teach us, or to make us better. If hearing about a brave, kind woman’s difficult path moves you to do or say something, maybe you could use her tricks (and note they’re from her, maybe in the alt tag) — or maybe you will lean harder into vacillating politicians and exploitative medical systems so that they take better, more humane care of people in pain.

Michelle put tremendous energy and effort toward the cause of beauty. Beauty enhances the world, gives and continues giving toward glory and wonder, joy and growth; it shares that character of giving-away with the Web, and with Michelle’s habit of offering for free that which she might have held as proprietary secrets. Giving-away makes us all greater; Michelle has made us greater.

Thank you for that, Michelle, and we will pray for you and those who love and miss you.

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