Monday, May 26, 2008

A friend and comrade has died

Today in Edinburgh up Corstorphine Hill at a woodland funeral , Kenny Skeel was laid to rest. On Sunday last week in Edinburgh we lost a friend, neighbour and activist. He was one of my neighbours in the Canongate where we are campaigning against developers Mountgrange. Kenny was an artist and an artisan - he painted beautiful pictures and murals for a living but as an activist he was always painting banners, attending campaign awareness raising events and so on. He even completed a painting he was doing for the Save Our Old Town campaign while he was in hospital in the last few days of his spectacular life. He was one of the founders and stalwarts of the historic vigil for a Scottish Parliament that set up camp on Calton Hill for five years between 1992 and 1997. This helped paved the way for the creation of a Scottish Parliament, keeping the issue in the forefront of Scots' minds 365 days a year. He was a gem, a real human being, the greatest story teller I have ever known. The poster you can see is one of Kenny Skeel's pieces of art work - a poste r he did for the Declaration of Calton Hill in October 2004.

This notice appeared in the Herald last week. My thoughts are with his partner Nell.

SKEEL — KEN. Peacefully, at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, on Sunday, 18th May, 2008, Ken Skeel, aged 61, brilliant artist, dancer, story teller and passionate campaigner for Truth and Justice in the world. Dearly loved and loving partner of Nell, uncle of Gale, friend and great inspiration to many. Funeral at Corstorphine Hill Cemetery, Edinburgh, on Monday, 26th May, at 2.30pm, to which all friends are respectfully invited. Donations in lieu of flowers to ‘SOOT’ (Save Our Old Town), at or Plant a Tree.

Kenny travelled the world, he especially loved Afghanistan and India. He was a fighter against injustice, the war, for better communities and for Scotland's right to self determination.

“This is a green world, with animals comparatively few and small, and all dependent on the leaves. By leaves we live. Some people have strange ideas that they live by money. They think energy is generated by the circulation of coins. Whereas the world is mainly a vast leaf colony, growing on and forming a leafy soil, not a mere mineral mass: and we live not by the jingling of our coins, but by the fullness of our harvests.” - Patrick Geddes

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