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Council of Canadians mourns the passing of Windsor activist Pat Noonan

Maude Barlow (right) sspeaks to the crowd with Pat Noonan beside her at a rally in Detroit to deliver water to residents whose service had been cut off.

Maude Barlow says Pat Noonan was the “quintessential activist.”  She was always ready to stand up for what she believed in, says Maude.  “From the fight for women’s equality to the environment, justice for refugees and the peace movement, Pat was there in the front lines. She was a long time member of the Council and supported our cross border solidarity work with water justice activists in Detroit. Her beautiful voice graced the Gaia women’s choir. I miss her already and hold her memory in my heart.”

Pat Noonan passed away this past weekend at the age of 87. She will be fondly remembered by friends, family and fellow activists for her lifelong commitment to social justice issues.

According to the Windsor Star, when she learned of petroleum coke piled on the U.S. banks of the Detroit River, she did her usual. She organized a protest.

When she read news reports about hockey star Ben Johnson’s sexual assault trial and the difficult questioning his victim endured on the witness stand, she went to court to show support for the young woman she had never met.

“You couldn’t stop her from caring for the earth or the marginalized,” said her long-time friend Julia Burgess. “She never waited for the momentum to start. She would just do it.”

Pat Noonan was the recipient of the Council of Canadians 2015 Activist of the Year Award.  Our heartfelt condolences go out to her family and friends.