Last updated: October 15, 2003

To Friends of Jon Cohen on His Passing

Dearest Community of Friends and Loved Ones and Comrades..

Jon passed away last night (his sister and i, independently, both mused that it might have been his silent protest of columbus day) he was in no pain, and was surrounded by his family and a couple of dear friends. We held his hand, told him how much we love him, and how we knew he loved us. We told him how much joy, wisdom, magic he brought into our lives, into the world at large. We played music all day (lots of 'grateful dead) we told him we would always be with him, and he would remain deeply in our hearts. We told him it was okay to let go: he could fly, he could be at peace, he could move on to the next place of learning and adventure. No more struggles.

He lived a very rich, joyous life. Each day really WAS a gift--he sincerely felt that way. He played, and danced and enjoyed people like it was an art. And he felt blessed that he could do work that brought him so much satisfaction, and was part of the bigger project of affecting social change and creating a peaceful, just planet. Jon was a truly extraordinary person. i believe it is not just his family, friends' and colleagues' loss, but a loss for all the world. We need more people like Jon, to fix up this planet. He was the most compassionate, passionate and wise person i've known. An extremely gentle man, he was powerful in his love and convictions. He and i had 7 beautiful years together. Along with the normal challenges and struggles, and those compounded by illness, each day was filled with sweetness, learning and play. i wouldn't trade it for anything--the past 3 1/2 years were indeed tough, and the loss unfathomable, still we had tremendous happiness together. It was a miracle to me, a great romance.

Thank you all for your incredible support-- your love and prayers. Your notes and gestures. Jon felt it ALL. Really. He knew how many people we're 'on his team' (those who knew him, and those who just knew me, or his family, but still sent good vibes. We're convinced it's why he had much more time than they said he would. There is no way to name the emptiness and sorrow, but his soul is mighty, in life, and i imagine, thereafter...i know people will carry his spirit with them in their work for peace, their building of community, in their relationships. The best tribute to Jon's life is to dance, and wage peace and be present and loving to those who are dear to you.

There will be a service on Thursday, October 18 at noon at the Riverside Funeral Home in Great Neck (Long Island) at 55 Station Plaza phone: (516)587-9600. Jon wasn't too keen on funerals, but understood we might all need it in our own process of grieving, but he was very much interested in a celebratory memorial which we will be planning in the coming weeks. And what a life to celebrate....

In peace, gratitude, liz