Obituary: Siobhan Rock’s struggles with ALS

mother, Hannah, grieved on hearing the di- agnosis. But Gilles said they realized, largely because of Rock’s attitude, that the time for grief would be later, and to enjoy the time they had left with her and to aid her as much as they could. One of the ways Gilles supported her was by skydiving with her. They parachuted with an instructor, and recorded the event for Youtube. ALS is a motor neuron disease, which Rock described as “a disease that kills you one muscle at a time”. At first she noticed changes to her hands and fingers, and about a year after diagnosis, as her coor- dination diminished, she began to need a wheelchair and to require more physical help. Rather than complain as she lost ability, however, she chose to rejoice about what she still had left. “I cannot chew food,” she had said as an example, “but I can still get nutrition frommy food through the feeding tube which is really not that bad, and I can still be with the family at dinnertime.” She had two small children, which she credited with helping keep her from sink- ing into despair. “They are so busy!” she had said. “I have no choice but to be in the mo- ment.” That was the primary lesson she and her family learned—to plan for the future but not to worry about it—instead to live in the present. “I’m very content,” she had said. “Of course I have regrets, but I take pleasure in doing what I can.” (Condolences may be left at www.fco-cfo. coop and donations to the ALS Foundation in lieu of flowers is requested by the family).


OTTAWA | Siobhan Rock, the former Rus- sell High School teacher who publicly chronicled her daily struggles with Amyo- trophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Geh- rig’s Disease) passed away January 13, 2014. Rock, who taught at both Russell Public and RHS a few years ago, was an active, ath- letic mother and professional woman until her diagnosis in 2011. During her illness she retained her desire to reach out to oth- ers. She created Conversations with Siob- han, videos available on Youtube, in which she matter of factly, and with humour, de- scribed the changes to her body and how she and her family had to adapt. Rock also engaged audiences through public speaking, including a presentation at RHS on December 6. She spoke openly and honestly about her increasing disability, sharing details such as obtaining nutrition through a feeding tube, having to learn to let a ventilator help her breathe, managing a household with the help of others, plan- ning for her family’s future without her, and the effect of her condition on those who cared about her. Rock’s husband, parents and children were all affected, of course, and Rock said it was possibly hardest on her adult son, with whom she used to hike and ski, among oth- er activities. She also had two very young children. At the school presentation, her stepfather Gilles spoke of how at first he and Rock’s

Photo Candice Vetter

Siobhan Rock is shown here with her stepfather, Gilles, at Russell High School. They attended in the fall and both spoke to students about Rock’s struggle with ALS. Rock passed away from the disease on January 13.

Museum carries the Torch

Deux grands spectacles au Centre des arts Shenkman

Les amoureux de musique pourront se régaler au Centre des arts Shenkman au cours des prochaines semaines. Et c’est Daniel Bélanger qui ouvre le bal, le 31 janvier, dès 20 h. Son nouveau spectacle, Chic de ville, dont les racines plongent au cœur de l’Amérique, flirtera avec un rockabilly se prêtant à merveille aux histoires simples qu’il souhaite raconter. Seulement 20 billets sont encore disponibles pour ce spectacle. Le samedi, 8 février dès 20h, c’est au tour de Kaïn de faire danser la salle du Centre des arts. Dans ce nouveau spectacle, le groupe originaire de Drummondville revisitera ses grands succès comme Mexico, Embarque ma belle, Comme dans l’temps et L’Amour du jour tirés de ses quatre derniers albums, en plus de nous faire découvrir le son accrocheur de ses nouveaux titres tirés de son plus récent album, Pleurer pour rire. Plusieurs billets sont encore disponibles. (AL)


GAGNANTS DU MOIS DE DÉCEMBRE 2013 À gauche : Paul Chartrand À droite : Léo Leduc

Photo Candice Vetter

The Russell Historical Society is once again celebrating the Olympics, from decades ago to the latest Olympic challengers. The display created for the Living Locally Fair in Russell on January 18 featured uniforms of athletes, photographs, and outfits and torches used by local torch runners during the 2010 Olympics when the Olympic Flame passed through Casselman and Limoges. The museum, located on Concession Street in Russell Village in the old church and firehall buildings, is open Sunday af- ternoons and has the torch and photographs on permanent display. The museum is also hosting a group of fiddlers on Sunday, February 9, during the upcoming winter carnival. Shown with the Olympic memorabilia are historical society members Mary Donnelly and Dorothy Kincaid

Ils reçoivent chacun 100 $ en bon d’achat de Roxanne Bourdeau de la Coopérative d’Embrun.

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