Sorry, Crystal, I never got to say goodbye; your passing was too sudden.
I’ll never forgot that raspy voice that spewed all manner of humour and wit. You were rough around the edges for sure, but you made me laugh when I needed it.
One day you stopped me in the library and said, in a very audible voice, “There’s nothing to read in here!”
And there were those crude jokes you told in our office. They almost made our flowers wilt.
You had much to say about the injustices in the world, and we published many of your letters that made you famous in Oliver.
You challenged Town council to help establish an emergency shelter for the vulnerable, and were right pissed off when the former mayor said, “Good luck with that.”
You defended smokers’ rights, condemning the government for selling tobacco and raking in the tax dollars. “Who the hell makes up these rules?” you asked.
In another letter, you said doctors are not God because they make mistakes, too.
You defended the building of the Okanagan Correctional Centre, Area 27 and the Coast Hotel (but didn’t like the location of the latter).
You promoted a service called “Dial a Bottle,” saying it would deliver spirits, booze and cigarettes at a reasonable cost. This would eliminate drinking and driving, you stated.
Thanks, Crystal, for being a “tough old bird” who spoke your mind and pulled no punches.
You advocated for the homeless and were a real trooper for those who felt the sting of injustice. I think you would have made a great lawyer, but may have been in contempt of court a few times for calling the judge an idiot.
I know one thing – Triangle Park in Oliver won’t be the same without you and your weekly diatribe.
You were politically incorrect but said it like it was, hitting the nail on the head in hopes to bring about the change that was needed.
You never asked me for money, only my ear, which you bent out of shape many times, which prompted me to see the real truth.
Thanks for bringing me down to earth, my dear . . . Crystal.