This will be short as I won’t pretend that I knew Von Coates other than through years of reading her blog as well as some email correspondence. Nonetheless, I was very saddened to hear of her passing recently. Quoting her family:
As a social worker and online advocate of hundreds of adopted persons, Liz was a huge-hearted woman, passionate about the rights of others. Her death on 17/05/2020 has been devastating to family, friends and the online community.
When I first started this blog, Von was one of the few who would repost my missives on her blog [link: The Life of Von], opening up connections between domestic and transnational adoption, but also connecting threads of dispossession, displacement, and disinheritance that are not limited to continents or nation-states.
This support meant the world to me, especially coming from someone who was, in my mind, at the forefront of those on the transaction end of adoption as a practice as well as a witness to what had transpired historically in terms of resistance. I read her blog and learned so much about where I stood in relation to that history; her words gave me solid ground to stand on; her support kept me going through much in the way of self-doubt.
Continuing from the fundraiser her family has put up in her honor:
Giving back to this wonderful cause is one way to pay tribute and pay it forward with love. The family of Elizabeth Hughes (Liz) aka Von Coates would like to invite other loved ones, friends and community to donate to Lifeline in her memory. Lifeline was one of Liz’s favourite charities because of the amazing work they do in supporting those in need via 24-hour telephone counselling.
I extend to them my sincere condolences as well as wish for them peace and peace of mind. I likewise encourage you to contribute to this fundraiser in her memory [link: Memorial to Elizabeth Ann Hughes], for a local organization that so amazingly mimics the support that Von was known for, even to those of us thousands of miles away. I will be always be grateful for her support and advice. May her soul find peace.