Joined: May 25, 2003 Posts: 4752 Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:31 am Post subject: Passing of Jacqueline Gouguenheim-Desloy (jgd)
It is with great sadness that I let everyone know Jacqueline passed away last night.
Jacqueline was an amazing force in the NeoOffice community. Most people probably know her only as jgd here on Trinity. She spent countless hours answering people's questions about all aspects of OpenOffice.org and NeoOffice with amazing patience and knowledge. She truly cared about helping people. Although French was her native language, I was always amazed at the incredible time, patience, and skill she had when she was helping out others in English. I found even myself frequently forgetting English was not her first language
Jacqueline also helped do much work assembling, editing, and reviewing the NeoOffice User's Guide. This ongoing, massive project was another way that Jacqueline was trying to help new users. Peter and her have spent countless hours editing and adapting the User's Guide and adding in information about all of the unique Mac problem solutions and features.
We also need to thank Jacqueline for all of the work she did on the wiki. Jacqueline was constantly trying to find ways to arrange everyone's knowledge in ways that would help new users learn better. Not only did Jacqueline work tirelessly to help translate into French, she also was a driving force behind getting everyone to put their tips and solutions into the wiki and figuring out how to better organize and review it. Under her guidance and with everyone's help, the wiki really has become an amazing resource and a place where we commonly refer people to get answers.
Perhaps most importantly, for many of us here Jacqueline was our friend. I had the great pleasure to be able to visit her. She had great patience as I tried to stumble along speaking pidgin French and a very infectious smile and happiness about her that is difficult to convey in words. She was very happy to have made so many friends all around the world and looked forward to talking with us every day and finding out what we all had been doing through the night. The whole community and her friends were very special to her, and she was very special to us.
I feel blessed to have worked with her and to consider her a friend. To use some of her own words, knowing her was truly "a great joy." I will miss her.
Joined: Jun 16, 2003 Posts: 11854 Location: California, USA
Posted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 10:48 am Post subject:
I was deeply saddened to hear of this news this morning.
Long before I had the chance to meet Jacqueline in person for the first time, her patient, friendly presence here made these forums a warm, happy place to be.
Sometimes working on a big project like NeoOffice can be a lonely endeavor. But Jacqueline somehow was able to project a real presence in spite of not being able to meet here face-to-face. Having her there every day really helped me get through many of the times I felt alone and overwhelmed by this project.
Jacqueline was one of those rare people that had a huge positive impact in many of our lives and I will miss her dearly.
Wow! I am stunned! I wondered where she has been lately. We emailed each other or PM'd and she had mentioned that she was dealing with a serious sickness, but I never asked her any more details. I too, was amazed at her command of English. She was a tremendous asset here and will be deeply missed by me and many others here. I never met here, but she was a warm and open lady in our correspondence. A Sad day indeed!
Joined: Jun 20, 2006 Posts: 2051 Location: Midwest, USA
Posted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 3:59 pm Post subject:
I, too, am saddened by her loss.
Jacqueline and I became active here at about the same time. In many ways I considered her a mentor: she encouraged me to use my French and helped me tackle the French vocabulary related to computers and the internet, which I never learned in my formal study of the language. She was a teacher by both profession and nature, something that was often evident here.
I deeply enjoyed working with her. She told me (as she told others) that she really enjoyed the NeoOffice community. The friendships she made and the fact that she could continue to be productive here throughout her illness were truly priceless to her. She told me more than once that this community gave her the strength to keep going.
I will miss her greatly. It's hard to think of trinity without her.
Joined: May 25, 2003 Posts: 4752 Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:43 pm Post subject:
I remember when I was visiting and talking with her and she was describing working with Lorinda and Samwise on some topic or other in the forums and just the beaming smile she had on her face. We were special to her, and she was special to us.
I already miss her very greatly. As Lorinda and Patrick said, Jacqueline had a unique ability to convey her character and personality to everyone she worked with and helped. While she was a private person, she was also very caring. I think in a way she was private because she didn't want anyone to worry about her.
I think it's rare to be able to know someone so giving and upbeat. For me I think the time we knew each other was very precious; I only wish we could have had more.
Joined: Feb 12, 2005 Posts: 607 Location: Australia
Posted: Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:24 am Post subject: Tribute to my friend Jacqueline
I am a little late in on this thread because I have been travelling. I left on an interstate trip last weekend. I had a feeling that Jacqueline would pass away while I was on the move, so I sent her a message that I hoped conveyed the real pleasure that I got from our friendship, and working with her on the User's Guide - and the follow-up, which we are/were in the process of writing. I will ensure that volume 2 [which is our own, not based on a pre-existing OOo volume] is completed and published. Jacqueline, in a manner typical of her, set up this second volume, and worked hard to ensure she finished her chapters, with her fight against cancer always in the background. Never once did she complain, and she tried so hard to fight the illness, remaining positive until the final days.
I first got to know Jacqueline when I got into trouble with the spreadsheet chapters on the Guide. She volunteered to help, and ended up being co-writer. She proof-read all my work, wrote several chapters, including new material, and did all sorts of extra things. It was a collaboration the equal of any I experienced in my working years. Jacqueline was a very easy person to work with; cheerful, optimistic, enthusiastic, encouraging, and generous.
We got to know each other through our frequent email exchanges. Both of us were teachers, recently retired. We also had a number of other things in common. For instance, she had two gorgeous little grandsons, and at this time we were awaiting the birth of our own first grandchild. Jacqueline and I swapped baby photos, jokes, stories and so forth. We became good friends although we never met, and I deeply mourn her passing. I have lost a true friend. I know that every day when I check emails I will be grieving that there is none from my friend there.
She told me about the diagnosis a little over a year ago, and I was stunned. However, she faced the illness with the same grace and good humour that we saw on this forum every day. It is clear that she found working on trinity gave an important focus away from the illness. She valued the NeoOffice community and her part in it. The fact that she kept the illness pretty quiet seems also typical of her concern for others rather than herself.
I also want to pay tribute to Patrick and Ed, who went out of their way while in Europe to travel to Lorraine and meet Jacqueline and her husband Roland. Jacqueline described this to me as a "great joy". I am happy to admit that I cried when I heard that they had visited her, knowing how much that visit would mean to her at that time.
As I said to Jacqueline when she was given the worst prognosis recently, I want to say "Je suis désolé" rather than the bland English "I am sorry". The French désolé seems to convey what I feel a lot more accurately.
Just putting it out there... anyway we can chip in and maybe send a small little gift to her husband and family as a little token of our respect, appreciation, and friendship? I am in 100% on this. I wrote Lorinda to see what she had to say prior to writing Patrick and Ed, but after reading Peter's post I decided to blatantly put it out there. Please advise as to interest or how to go about doing this.
thank you. Norman
p.s. I must also add that she had mentioned that it was her work here with Neo and the forum and guide that helped her through her sickness. I wish I would have had the chance to meet her.
Last edited by K-9 on Sat Jul 19, 2008 2:10 pm; edited 2 times in total
Joined: Jun 11, 2006 Posts: 481 Location: Great Britain
Posted: Sat Jul 19, 2008 1:59 pm Post subject:
As a very occasional contributor and presence on the forums, I feel it's not my place to make comment on Jacqueline's passing, but one thing is surely worthy of mention:
From the tributes here it's obvious that Jacqueline was a very special person. I don't think there is a greater gift in life than to love and be loved by people who will remember us when we are gone. I hope that Jacqueline's family can take consolation in the knowledge that she gave that gift to, and received it from, so many people.
Posted: Sat Jul 19, 2008 6:16 pm Post subject: Remembering Jacqueline
I just returned home (and am not ready to be back at trinity quite yet) and read the sad news when checking my weeks of email, and I knew I should come here to join our communal grieving of Jacqueline's passing and celebration of her life and times with us. Thanks to Ed for the wonderful opening post to this thread, and to the others who knew her and have posted since.
There's not very much I can say at this point that others haven't already said in this thread, but I will try. I didn't know Jacqueline as well as Peter and Lorinda, nor did I ever meet her in person as Patrick and Ed did, but I certainly considered her a friend and was amazed by all of her work here, and I am deeply saddened to hear of her passing.
Jacqueline did just about everything there was to do in the NeoOffice community (the only thing I don't know of her having done is writing some code!): she answered support questions in the forum (in two languages), collaborated and co-authored the NeoOffice User Guide with Peter (a mammoth undertaking), actively tested NeoOffice and triaged bugs in the NeoBugzilla (a lonely and thankless, but incredibly valuable, task), and was a major contributor to the NeoWiki (again in two languages). It would not be much of a stretch to say that Jacqueline doubled the amount of information in the wiki during her time with us. Moreover, even though she is no longer with us in person, Jacqueline will continue to help NeoOffice users far into the future through her answers here in the forum, her articles, translations, and additions in the wiki, and with the User Guide. To say that she is still with us in spirit is certainly true, though far too limited in Jacqueline's case.
Jacqueline was a great friend to all of us in the NeoOffice community, a valuable resource, and above all a wonderful person. She helped so many people during her time with us, and my own life is so much richer just having worked with her. I will miss Jacqueline very much—I'm still having a bit of difficulty grasping the fact I'll never have another PM waiting in my inbox in the morning, or a note on a wiki article, or the occasional email from her—but I will remember her always, and cherish the time she shared with us.
I've spent a large amount of time today weeping, which on one hand seems odd for someone I'd never "met" nor had known for very long, but on the other I think more than anything else it is the most accurate reflection of how much Jacqueline meant to us and how she touched my life.
Peter's right: je suis désolé.
Smokey _________________ "[...] whether the duck drinks hot chocolate or coffee is irrelevant." -- ovvldc and sardisson in the NeoWiki
Joined: Nov 27, 2005 Posts: 108 Location: Salford, UK
Posted: Thu Jul 31, 2008 6:10 am Post subject:
Even though I don't own a mac anymore I'd like to add my condolences. Jacquelines involvement and help meant a huge amount to me when I used NeoOffice. Not least because it inspired me to help with the Bugzilla triage which I surprisingly found quite rewarding.
Joined: Nov 21, 2005 Posts: 1285 Location: Witless Protection Program
Posted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 5:12 pm Post subject:
I have long been away but saw the news of Jacqueline's passing on the NeoWiki.
JGD was a source of great wisdom and I always enjoyed her messages. As much as I have missed participating in the NeoOffice community, the passing of a Old Soul like jgd leaves the world a little ... sadder.
I send great respect to her family, the community, and all who had the pleasure of knowing Jacqueline.
Philip ( feeling a little sadder and shedding a tear-or-two ):
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