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Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

NCIL Joins APRIL in Mourning the Loss of Linda Gonzales

Linda GonzalesThe National Council on Independent Living joins with the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL) in mourning the loss of Linda Gonzales. We encourage those whose lives she touched, and those who did not have the honor of knowing her to take a moment today to remember or learn about her lifelong contribution to the IL Movement.

From Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL):

July 27, 2013 marks the end of an Era. It is the day the Disability Movement lost its “Queen of IL,” Linda Gonzales, the Mother of APRIL. We are heartbroken. Blessings to your family in this time of grief.

Words cannot express what she meant to so many of us. She will remain a symbol of strength and resolve… always hopeful and always loving. She cared deeply about the rights of all people with disabilities and dedicated her entire adult life to empowering us. Life will be dimmer now. The world is missing a very bright light that shone for equality, inclusion, and accessibility.

The impact that Linda had on Rural Independent Living is evident in Federal laws that have been enacted, in language we have come to rely on, and in rules we have come to live by. Her impact threads together the rural fabric that is the IL Movement. It can be felt every year, in every APRIL Conference. 

Her legacy lives on through the Linda Gonzales Award for Outstanding Rural Youth. We will march forward in your footsteps. We will never let the torch you lit burn out.

You are soaring now, high like an eagle. And it suits you. Our dear, dear friend… We love you. We will miss you always.

In lieu of flowers or cards: Linda’s husband, Jerry, has asked APRIL to coordinate the collection of monetary support. The costs are many and any contribution will be most helpful.

Please send donations to:

APRIL
2001 Pershing Circle, Ste. 200
North Little Rock, AR 72114

*Call the APRIL office at 501-753-3400 if you wish to use a credit card.

Thank You.

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