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Paula

Paula Lind

Oct 5th 1966 — Jan 14th 2023 (56 years)

Biography

Paula Martene Lind died on January 14, 2023, by her own hand after a long struggle with mental illness. She was 56.


Her death came 10 weeks after the death of her mother, Jane Lind, from pneumonia and heart failure. Paula said at Jane's memorial that her mother had been “a lifeline, showing me love and reminding me of reasons to keep going.”

Paula was born on October 6, 1966, in York, Pennsylvania. A year later, her family moved to Toronto and later became Canadian citizens. Paula spent for the rest of her life there.


A gifted artist, Paula studied art at Central Technical School and Ontario College of Art. She exhibited in numerous group exhibitions and worked as an animal portrait artist. In an artist's statement for her first and only solo show, in Toronto in 2011, she wrote:


”I hope in viewing my work you will allow the non-human figures to have their own existence, and not see them simply as symbols of human emotions or dramas. I think there is a failure in imagination and empathy when non-human animals are viewed as nothing more than substitutes for something human.”


It would be an understatement to say that Paula was an animal lover. She lived with companion animals all her life and, with deep compassion, cared for them, drew and painted them, sewed beautiful stuffed-animal portraits of them. She also attended Sheridan College to earn a veterinarian technician degree and worked for the Toronto Humane Society and animal clinics in Toronto.

Paula suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, caused by grievous abuse by a teacher in her teenage years. Her illness gained an upper hand in 2012 and forced Paula to give up her profession. She lived with the assistance of Ontario Disability Support Program for her remaining years.


Those who knew Paula will remember her humour, her spirit, her smile, her creative energy, and her passion for life.


Bereft, among her other friends and relatives, are her brother Gareth, her sister-in-law Christel, her nephew Jordan and her father Loren. Her cat Tempo, which had been lost during her weeks at the hospital and which she found days before she died, is in good hands.


In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Women’s College Hospital Foundation and Ontario SPCA and Humane Society.


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If you missed the memorial and would like to view it, please email gareth@linddesign.ca, and I will send you a link to the recorded video. (There is no public link to protect the privacy of those involved.)


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I apologize that, in making sure the live audience could view it properly, I forgot to share the screen and sound for Zoom attendees. Please watch the beautiful tribute to Paula that Tom Snyders and Suzie Ungerleider (Oh Susanna) sang, a version of Will The Circle Be Unbroken by A.P. Carter (revised lyrics by Tom). — Gareth


You can view and listen to it here.

Gallery

Paula with Hazel, mid-90s
Paula, right, at her art show opening, with her mother Jane, May 5, 2011, Toronto.
Spring 2003 with her family and friends
One of Paula's artworks, mixed media and collage on mylar
As part of both her healing and her art, Paula drew many pieces of affirmation.

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