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Farewell Howard Clark

On 1 February, over 300 people squeezed into an auditorium in southern Madrid designed for half that number, to remember and celebrate the life of Howard Clark, a key figure in Peace News and War Resisters’ International (WRI) for several decades.

The evening event, organised by WRI, was attended by peace activists from across Europe, as well as many folk from Madrid, where Howard has lived with his partner Yolanda Juarros Barcenilla since 1996. (Yolanda organised a weekend programme of activities involving local activists and social centres.)

British attendees included several family members, Michael Randle (who co-wrote the obituary in last month’s issue), Albert Beale (who represented Peace News Trustees at the commemoration), and former editors Chris Booth and Ippy D.

Michael, Albert and the two of us shared our memories of Howard during the British section of the memorial. The MC was WRI’s Javier Gárate, who was also one of several translators making the whole event bilingual in Spanish and English.

A huge screen constantly cycled through photos of Howard (smiling) through the years. Speakers during the evening alternated with songs from the Arcadia and Vallekanta choirs (which Howard was involved in).

The evening ended with a wonderful musical performance by Howard’s children Ismael and Violeta, and some friends. Their final piece was Monty Python’s ‘Always look on the bright side of life’.

Topics: Howard Clark