On March 7th, 2019, I sadly wrote about the passing of one of Second Life’s most recognised residents, Fran Seranade (Fran Swenson in the physical world).
Fran, a Parkinson’s Disease sufferer, came to prominence in Second Life and in the media due to the remarkable positive effect her involvement in the platform had on her condition. I had the privilege to write about Fran’s story far back in 2013 in Of Parkinson’s, Second Life and a story worth reading, after coming across an on-line article by the San Diego Union-Tribune. Her situation became both the focal point of studies into the benefits of virtual worlds on a variety of physical and mental conditions, and was the trigger for Fran’s daughter, Barbara Richards (Barbie Alchemi in-world), with the help of her brother (AlmostThere Inventor in SL), to establish Creations for Parkinson’s, designed to raise funds to support the work of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research and to provide an in-world meeting place for those stricken by the illness and those seeking a sense of community and support.
At the time of Fran’s passing, it was noted that an in-world memorial event for her was being planned – and this has now growth into a celebration of Fran’s life and times, which will take place throughout Saturday, May 11th, 2019.
Commencing at 11:00 SLT and running through until 21:00 SLT at the Savoy Ballroom in Creations Park, the event will feature the voices and talents of some of Second Life’s best-known performers, many of whom knew Fran directly, by both performing at her 90th birthday celebrations two years ago, and in performing in support of Creations for Parkinson’s events.
As with all events at Creations Park, the celebration will present people with the opportunity to show their support for the work of the MJF Foundation by offering donations to Team Fox, the official fund-raising arm of the Foundation.
Those who cannot attend the event, but who would like to commemorate Fran’s life and the work of Team Fox / the MJF Foundation can do so by donating through any of the kiosks at Creations Park or by visiting the following web page:
In addition, and planned to be available by June 1st, 2019, a memorial honouring Fran and this celebration will be established at the Savoy Swing Era Museum, and will be available online at SavoyBallroom.org/fran.
Additional information and links to performer details can be found at: https://www.savoyballroom.org/may-11.html.