A few weeks ago I woke up to an email titled “HB04 – Very Sad News To Share.” An unusual title for a traditionally powerful, inpiring, chirpy group of people in HB04. Proceeding to open the email I discovered that one of our cohort had recently passed away. Lilly Marie.
I hadn’t had the opportunity to speak to Lilly yet, nor get to know her, but by the comments that followed that day, it was a shock to everyone.
I felt some loss at this sad news, I might not have known her, but just being selected for HB04 and being part of this family of 100 women, I felt like she was already a friend, someone with similar goals and visions. There is already a shortage of women in STEMM, and to have been taken away at such an early age is incredibly sad and unfair. Her bio on the Homeward Bound website, and comments from those who knew her, she sounds like a fierce and passionate Scientist.
How we honour Lilly’s memory on the HB04 cohort and out in Antarctica will be deeply thought about over the next 11 months. But success in greater inclusivity of women in STEMM, will honour her wishes and her vision.
We are now 99 women heading to Antarctica, but her impact on this planet will be felt for many more years, and she will be in our hearts and thoughts for the whole of this journey.
Life isn’t always fair, enjoy what you have now, and live life to its fullest.