Finding inspiration from Dan

By Stewart Grant

I’m writing these words on December 30th.  On Wednesday, we attended the funeral of our beloved editor, Dan Rankin, who died on December 22nd at the age of 29 following a horrific car crash.

For the last ten days, ever since the accident, Dan has dominated our thoughts night and day. The funeral gave us the chance to hear the thoughts from those who loved Dan most, and who knew him best. Everyone spoke so eloquently and their words brought comfort.

Despite Dan’s young age, his funeral truly was a “celebration of life”, and that’s because of the way he lived. As mentioned often, it really is extraordinary what Dan was able to see, do, and experience in just 29 years.

Dan’s life should inspire us all. He did not hesitate to reach for the stars. He had the courage to perform confidently in the public eye, both in the theatre and in writing his weekly articles. In his greatest act of courage, he had the strength to open his heart to Meagan over three years ago, after having lost Abby tragically in 2011. Together, he and Meagan had the adventurous spirit to travel the world. She will carry on knowing that in time, life can again be wonderful, as Dan had proven to her through his love.

Here at the Independent, we must too carry on, but we will do so inspired by Dan each day. He has established the standard for community journalism and we will attempt to follow the path he has led.

When I first met with Dan’s family following the accident, I found comfort in their words when they said that Dan just loved working at the newspaper. I guess that is another lesson that we can learn from Dan:  Spend time doing what you love to do.

Good bye Dan, we will miss you but we will never forget you.

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