by Laurel Winterbourne
The world needs GOOD stories. Fortunately there are people like Trevor Clark who put it all on the line, travel thousands of miles and spend countless hours, days and months to get these stories out there. Trevor is an outdoor adventure photographer and friend of Patagonia who decided that he wanted to tell stories that mattered to him.
After meeting Jessie Stone and hearing her story, there was no question in Trevor’s mind that this story needed to be told. Jessie is a professional whitewater kayaker and medical doctor who went to Uganda to paddle the Nile, but what she saw, changed the course of her life and the lives of many others.
[Above: Dr. Jessie Stone is a member of the US Freestyle Kayak Team and a Medical Doctor. In 2004, she founded Soft Power Health to provide malaria education, prevention and control for the people of Uganda. Video frame: Trevor Clark]
It was a year and a half ago that our late great friend and voice of The Cleanest Line, Mike Colpo, posted about Trevor’s mission to travel to Uganda to tell the story of Jessie Stone and her inspirational work. Mike knew that Trevor would find success in his journey and did his part to help spread the word.
Trevor used Kickstarter to fund the hard costs for the project and thanks to The Cleanest Line readers, Patagonia employees, family, friends and complete strangers he received just enough donations in the last couple hours to reach his goal. It is all or nothing with Kickstarter. If you don’t hit your goal, you get nothing.
This story has now come full circle and Trevor’s efforts are reflected in the multimedia piece he created which tells the story of a kayaker, turned doctor, turned humanitarian. The story was picked up by CNN, and Jessie’s foundation is beginning to gain the support it needs to continue to do GOOD.
Laurel Winterbourne has been with Patagonia for three years and
finds her passion in writing, the environment and outdoor adventures. She grew up surfing in Encinitas CA and now lives on Donner Lake in
Truckee, California and has made the Sierra her playground.
Editor’s note: Today marks one year since we suddenly lost our good friend and co-worker Mike Colpo, known to Cleanest Line readers as localcrew. It’s been a rough year for many of us who knew him well, especially Mike’s widow, Liz. She continues to find strength in writing, like her husband did, and sharing her work on Elephant Journal and Recovering Yogi.
Trevor Clark, the photographer featured in this story was also a good friend of Mike's. Trevor's photos of our mutual friend are priceless now and Trevor addresses this in a post on his blog, Why Do What I Do?
“I spent last weekend saying goodbye to a lost friend (Life IS Short Pt. III) in a special place. It was not an easy thing to do, but we had some images on hand that showed moments of his life ranging from childhood to fun outdoor adventures to his wedding with the love of his life. Over time I have contributed a few images to the pot of visual memories of our friend, and at the time they just felt like cool fun images. Now, they all hold much deeper meaning to everyone in our group. When I look back on it all, I can’t imagine how things would be if I had not clicked the shutter those few precious times. Would we otherwise lose those treasured moments in the flood of visual and emotional experiences we have everyday?
Maybe not, but one thing is certain, pictures bring those memories and the quality of those moments front and center. They help you remember small details and particulars you can’t explain. For me, they brought back the voice of my friend. When I saw those pictures of him I remembered the sound of his voice when he was completely engaged in conversation. It was nice.”
[Our pal Mike making us laugh and serving up his famous tartiflette. Photo: Trevor Clark]