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Words for Richard Williams’ Memorial Gathering in Vermont

August 11, 2006


(This statement was read by Rick Laaman to the people gathered in VT)

Richard, my brother, my comrade, my friend, I have written many words about you – for you, since your passing last Dec.7, in that stinkin federal prison in North Carolina. I wanted to say something new on this saturday in June, up there in the clean Vermont air as some of your closest people – family and friends, gather to remember you with fondness, love and respect, and I think a little humor too.

I find myself talking about you quite often in conversations here in Walpole, to my son Rick and other family members, often with Kazi and with other comrades too. You’ve never stopped being with me, with us, Richard. You never will.

I miss you bro. We all miss not having you in this unfinished struggle for Freedom, Justice and our Revolutionary future. No matter what the situation demanded, you were always there, doing what was necessary and possible, and quite often just taking on the impossible as well. It seems like there were always risks to be taken, sacrifices to be made and work to be done. I can’t recall a time evcr, when you hesitated to take up the task.

The sacrifices, especially the reality of not being with your children, both during a lot of the underground days and the later years in prison, were hard. Of course they were most hard on the children. But I clearly recall conversations we had about the difficulties our children were having, and how it was for the children, our own as well as the babies in South Africa, El Salvador, Palestine, Puerto Rico and more, for the future of all these children, that we had to and wanted to fight for the revolutionary future we all need.

I remember we discussed the hope that our kids would come through their childhood with some happiness and success, and that they would have at least a little understanding of why we had to do what we did. Well my brother, your children – our children, are bascially healthy, intelligent, balanced, a very decent and nice group of human beings, who are gathered here today remembering you – your life and its meaning. And there are many more of us, in spirit, there with all of you in Vermont right now, honoring and remembering you Richard. We loved you in life my brother and we are just gonna keep on loving you still.

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