Remembering Cherisse Luxa: Crowd packs the pub

(Photo by Dina Johnson)
Only one guest was truly two-dimensional at last night’s lively wake for local activist/advocate Cherisse Luxa: The life-size cardboard version of Howard Dean, for whom Ms. Luxa had served as a delegate during his presidential run (above, that’s Liz Giba with “Flat Howard”). A month and a half after her death from cancer at age 62, she was feted tonight by a standing-room-only crowd at Mick Kelly’s Irish Pub in Burien, with friends from West Seattle to White Center to Burien and beyond (in both directions) crowding the pub, like the 34th District Democrats‘ King County Committeeman Ivan Weiss:

(Photo by Dina Johnson)
Dina Johnson took that photo while, as she says, he was “speaking about his admiration and respect for Cherisse as an ally, and occasionally adversary. (He) said the only time she was wrong is when she asserted she could get Dave Reichert to flip parties and become a Dem.” Also in that photo, State Sen. Joe McDermott at right, Liz Giba at left.

(Photo by Dina Johnson)
Dina also made and photographed that collage of scenes from Ms. Luxa’s life (given to her family). We took a photo of one of the snapshots you see in that collage – one from her years with the King County Sheriff’s Office:

(WCN/WSB photo by Patrick Sand)
Reminiscences of Ms. Luxa’s law-enforcement work were shared, too, says Dina: “… we found out she loved ‘bones and bugs’ forensics that date the death of a corpse.” And an emotional moment: “A short video was shown of her testimony about annexation at a public hearing, from just a week before she was hospitalized. I felt, being familiar with her normal voice, that she spoke with some difficulty, but it was not obvious. That made me tear up.” Last night’s wake took the place of the monthly Drinking Liberally event, at which Ms. Luxa had long been a fixture.

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