Requiem

Today a comment arrived on the Loom that deserves a post of its own. It concerns a death of a reader of this blog.

But first, some background:

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In April, a reader named Abigail sent in this tattoo, with the following description:

My first year of college, I wanted to be an English major, and I took Intro Chemistry to fill the science requirement. The brief unit on thermodynamics made me fall totally in love. Entropy made sense to me – scientifically, philosophically. I became a Chemistry major and love every second of it. I got the tattoo to mark my rite of passage – Entropy going both ways, with its symble delta-S in the middle, all supported in the roots of Yggdrasil, the world-tree of Norse mythology (harking back to my English-lit days).

Today, Abigail’s mother sent in this sad note:

Abigail is my daughter. I was with her when she got this tattoo last March, several months after she turned 18, while she was attending Reed College in Portland. It was an adventure for both of us. She came home for the summer in May, and four days later was in a fatal car accident.

I will be getting this same tattoo next week – Abigail’s personal design – from the same artist. It will memorialize both my daughter and her intellect and passion for science and philosophy.
The world has lost an incredible mind. Thank you Mr. Zimmer for displaying this artwork and sharing it with visitors to this site.

All great human passions have the same thing in common: a possibility to live on, in the minds of others after their original mind has passed. A tattoo is an outward sign of that inward connection. We will remember Abigail, and we will give her mother our deepest condolences. May Yggdrasil‘s branches continue to grow within us all.