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Friday, October 22, 2010

EDITORIAL: A Goodbye to Marijuana Princess Michelle Rainey

By Ron Crumpton

On Wednesday, the marijuana community lost a warrior, advocate and queen when Michele Rainey succumbed to her long battle with cancer. This leaves a big hole in our movement and our hearts.

Michelle K. Rainey
Michelle was only 39, but in her 39 years, she created more awareness to the cause, helped more people and did more to add to the legitimacy of our movement than most of us will in a thousand lifetimes.

Rainey was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease as a teenager, and like many medical marijuana patients, she found that marijuana eased the symptoms of her illness without the debilitating side effects caused by the chemical medications that her doctors had prescribed.

She became an advocate for marijuana and was responsible for organizing Marc Emery’s marijuana advocacy efforts.

She was one of the leading forces in the formation of the B.C. Marijuana Party, and she personally ran as a candidate touring in her Cannabus, which had been former U.S. President, and drug war king, Ronald Reagan’s old campaign tour bus.

She produced her own YouTube Show, Michelle’s Medicinal Marijuana. She distributed information on cannabis education and was a director of Treating Yourself magazine.

Later in her life, she was diagnosed with melanoma and lymphatic cancer. She succumbed to her illness Wednesday night. Her husband, Jeff Tek, and mother, Emilie was at her side at the end.

"Michelle needs to be recognized as one of the greatest activists this movement has ever had," said Emery in an email from a U.S. prison. "Michelle may have literally given her life to the movement, and when people think about what they can do for freedom in their lifetime, Michelle's life is a shining example of how much is possible, even under great duress."

In recent comments Michelle said, “I want people to keep working, keep working for change — too many sick people are still having difficulty getting their medication. That’s what I want as my legacy — change.”

Her short life was filled with pain and tragedy, but in the midst of her personal tribulations, she found the strength to stand up and fight for those who were unable to fight for themselves. She put aside her own pain to help others with theirs, and she educated millions to the truth about the world’s finest herb.

In short, Michelle changed the world, and for that, we should all be truly grateful.

Now it is time for the rest of us to stand up and continue the fight. It is time to pick up the torch that Michelle carried so proudly, so bravely because if we do not then all of the work that she gave her life for – was for nothing, and I for one cannot accept that.

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