Here are remembrances of friends we have lost along the way. They leave behind their stories, their forum posts, and memories we can treasure.
LAURA - LAURACH - CHRISTIAN
It was with great sadness that we heard of the passing of Laura Christian — aka Laurach — on Christmas Day, as a result of breast cancer. Laurach was a warm-hearted, kind and generous FoLC, with a renowned sense of humour. Within the fandom, her twin passions were Dean Cain and nfic — she was often teased about how she could never get enough of either, to which she wholeheartedly agreed! Her warmth and good humour are sadly missed. Tributes to Laurach can be found here on Zoomway's messageboards.
Anita was a warm-hearted FoLC, whose generosity was boundless. Many was the FoLC who received little surprise gifts over the years — a blooper videotape, research material to help with a fanfic… whatever she could do to help support her fandom, her fellow friends and FoLCs and, most of all, authors. She could also display a wicked sense of humour.
Anita was a truly warm and supportive person — always encouraging, always understanding and always honest.
— Carol Malo
BARBARA KNUTSON aka WAFFYBARB
Barbara Knutson died in early August 2000, after battling an infection for most of the summer. She IRCed under the nick WAFFyBarb from the early 1990s. Although she wasn’t as active in FoLCdom for a number of years before her death, she will always be fondly remembered.
Many people in FoLCdom remember Barbara because she was one half of a “FoLC romance” — she met her husband Jon Knutson (who has several stories in the L&C Fanfic Archive) through FoLCdom. When they came on IRC to announce their engagement, it brought the house down.
Barb loved fanfic and was one of the early members of an early IRC channel called #nfic. We weren’t supposed to discuss nfic in detail on #loiscla because it was a “family channel,” so we created #nfic to discuss whatever story had most recently been released, brainstorm ideas for new stories, etc.
Barb was also KathyB’s first editor, and helped her get her first two stories, “Camping with Clark” and “Winners” ready for release.
Barbara released two nfics during her active years in the fandom. Her story “Fortress of Solitude” started out as a round robin (one of the first ones, I believe!) and she took our start and built a wonderful story around it. Her “A Christmas to Remember” was also well received in FoLCdom.
— Kathy Brown
It is with deep regret that I inform FoLCdom of the passing of a great man. Phil Mogul passed away December 24, 2008. He had been hospitalized several weeks ago for a stroke and finally suffered a heart attack. In addition, he was in great pain due to back injuries suffered from Viet Nam and Crohn’s disease.
I met Phil through Lois and Clark. Several years ago I edited a fic for him and our association continued in that vein. After two years or so I admitted that I lived not too far from him (about 2 hrs); I was cautious at first, you see. We made arrangements to meet for lunch along with our spouses and we all hit it off. From that time on we talked on the phone often and occasionally visited each other.
Phil was one of the most generous people I have ever known. He truly wanted to help people, and it didn’t matter to him what race or religion you were. He believed in family and had very strong family values, as one can see by reading his fics. He was a spiritual man and believed strongly in a higher being, but at the same time he did not judge people poorly who had beliefs different from his own. Phil and I did not share the same religion, but I found we could agree on almost everything. He gave me a lot to think about and broadened my viewpoint.
Most of you may not know that Phil was a highly educated man. He had an earned Ph.D in physics and chemistry and was well versed in many other areas. He delighted in writing fanfic because writing prose was totally new to a man who spent his life in science and writing scientific journals. He wanted to exercise his brain fully by doing something he had never done before. His quest for knowledge was enormous.
Phil was a wonderful teacher. His students revered him, and he challenged them to go beyond what they felt they were capable of. He was known for his many inspiring anecdotes and words of wisdom. His high ethical and moral character made him an excellent role model for generations of students.
I’m sure there are many accomplishments of Phil’s that I may never know. He was a humble man, who did not try to set himself above others. But I will tell you now that I think he was a giant of a man, a wonderful friend, a good husband to his wife, and a good father to his children. He will indeed be missed by many.
I have a fic that Phil wrote that has not been placed in the Archive yet. I edited it last summer. [Ed. note: “The Second Time Around” is now on the archive.] Phil wanted to change a few things before uploading it to the Archive, but he never got around to it. I felt it was one of his best. I will be uploading it soon to the Archive posthumously. He always wondered if many read his tales. Feedback to our authors is so important, guys. I assured him and told him that if nothing else he was expressing what was in his heart. And what a sincere and loving heart! Please read his last fic. I will share with his wife any condolences if you wish to send them to me.
— Jeanne Pare
Probably only the old-timers among FoLCs will remember Renate (Rhen) Brink, but I won’t ever forget her. She passed away yesterday morning due to an aneurysm. I hope my post is more of a tribute than a eulogy, because she was always such an upbeat person always willing to help anyone.
Rhen was always so nice and very enthusiastic and funny. She was the first person who tried to get fanfic mailed out to Lois and Clark fans way back in 1994. She was also in charge of the majordomo fanfic list on Corey’s university site back in 95/96. She wrote some short, but memorable fanfic back when the show was still on the air.
If you go here for Rhen’s work and scroll down, you’ll see her fanfic stories.
I met Rhen at LAFF 95. I remember she told me a story about her 4 year old son. It was Thanksgiving and he was crying and putting up a fuss because he didn’t want to wear a suit and tie. Rhen tried everything she could to cheer him up and talk him into wearing the suit, but nothing was working. Finally she told him that even Superman has to wear a suit and tie as Clark Kent so people won’t know he’s really Superman. Her son smiled and took her arm. “Let’s go, Lois.”
Good-bye, Rhen, I’ll miss you.
[Ed. note: We regret to say the fandom has also lost Zoomway.]
In the early days of the fandom, there was an email distribution list to get the stories out to the fans. Beginning in 1994, Rhen Brink ran the listserv and every few months would compile an index of all the stories that had gone out. By 1995, past stories were archived on an automated majordomo server, and readers, after consulting Rhen’s index of file names and story descriptions, could send a command to the majordomo site via email, requesting that stories be sent to them. Then Rhen moved the stories into an FTP archive, which let readers more easily download stories.
In the spring of 1996, Lauren Willoughby came up with a Web-based front end to the FTP archive that allowed people to read stories from the FTP archive simply by clicking on a link. This website — which at the time was a huge innovation! — was the first incarnation of the Lois & Clark Fanfic Archive.
In the summer of 1997, Rhen decided to retire from fanfic, and L&C fanfic found itself at a crossroads — how would fans continue to get new stories? Fortunately, the answer came quickly. Demi emailed a group of people who were active in fanfic at the time with a proposal — why not form a committee to take over the running of the Archive? By spreading the workload (which at that time was increasing rapidly) among several people, no one person would be have to shoulder all the work by themselves, as Rhen had done for so many years. (Sadly, Rhen passed away earlier this year, but she left FoLCdom with a wonderful legacy. Without her, L&C fanfic would not be what it is today.)
— Kathy Brown
» Obituary threads for Rhen can be found here on Zoomway's boards.
URSULA aka XANABEE
Ursie had a youthful enthusiasm for all things Lois and Clark that defied her years. Despite many years of illness she remained always upbeat and optimistic and her love for fanfic and writing was always a joy and solace for her, even in the darkest times.
» An obituary thread for Ursula can be found here on the fanfic boards.
Yael was a bright, bubbly, energetic young FoLC, who had a boundless enthusiasm for fanfic and who was always first to provide feedback and support. She was forced to leave the fandom after being called up to Israeli military service and at the age of just 21 her promising life was brought to an abrupt and brutal end when the café she and her fellow recruits were in was bombed by Hamas.
Perhaps the most poignant thing about Yael’s life was her ambition to be an astronaut and to be on the first manned mission to Mars. Just weeks before her death, she had written to NASA asking for information on what university degrees she would need to apply. She might never have gotten to see those stars, but she was always one of the brightest stars in FoLCdom and is greatly missed. Perhaps she was best summed up by her father: “She had enough dreams for dozens of people.”
Hamakom yenachem, Yael
» Obituaries for Yael can be found here on the fanfic boards and here on the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs site.
I heard recently that Zoomway lost her battle with cancer. Oldtimers will understand the depth of our community’s loss. Newcomers...
To explain Zoomway you need to know that in many ways she was the heart of us, besides being “The Boss of Us” — the tongue-in-cheek rank she used on her own boards. She wrote the very first Lois & Clark fanfic (“Lois and Clark Meet The X-Files”). She originated or inherited the LOISCLA mailing list, the fandom’s first popular, universal gathering place. She hosted the first boards where fanfic writers could post their stories in progress, and you can revisit older stories and find new ones on her site even today. Her knowledge of Superman in all his incarnations was encyclopedic, and she was the chief architect of the Lois & Clark Concordance. She was the authority on L&C canon and characterization. She wrote the sharpest dialogue. Her comments on IRC were usually the wittiest. She encouraged new fanfic writers.
Without Zoomway this fanfic archive would not exist. One very much like it probably would — but as webmaster I can definitively say that this one would not. If I had never stumbled on the gateway drug that was her “Counter Clark-Wise” back in the day, I never would have sought out more stories like it, never would have found other FoLCs, and never would have volunteered to help organize and preserve all these great fanfics. I owe her so much. I know I’m not the only one brought into the fold via her stories or the work she has done housing FoLCdom’s meeting places.