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for no man is an island

Space: Above and Beyond is one of the more obscure fringes of media fandom; the series didn't spring from an already-popular comic series, movie, or book, had no stars, and ran for only thirteen episodes on Fox before being killed by the network, whose execs apparently resented the fact that the show had become much more than Space: 90210. Still, for several years the S:AAB fans of the Space Ready Reserve were extremely active, playing an unusually proactive role in improving the series and heaping praise on the Sci-Fi Channel when SFC picked up the show a year or so after Fox cancelled it. In addition to show-related stuff, the SRR also conducted a number of charity "operations" in support of the troops in Bosnia and Iraq.

One of the more prominent figures in the history of the Ready Reserve (also referred to as the 59th Squadron or "Loaded Dice") was Kate Duncan, a freelance publicist and book editor from Pennsylvania. Kate did a lot to promote the show and the SRR and served as its second president after founder Pat Moss stepped down. Kate ran the S:AAB Alumni News & Reviews website, which was the go-to for what was happening with the show's actors, actresses, and producers, and was a key figure in the SRR's long-running effort to get the show released on DVD, which finally happened almost ten years after the show had gone off the air. Kate moved out to LA in 2005, fulfilling a long time dream, but the dream was cut short last week when she died of cancer at the age of 51.

I had lost touch with her long before that, and in fact had fallen away from S:AAB fandom some years ago while trying to cope with a disintegrating house, poor health, and the collapse of my second attempt at a graduate degree. I wish we could have parted on better terms. Kate stepped down as president of the SRR because of a controversy in the ranks that seems relatively trivial now but was extremely bitter then, and much like my assuming the chairmanship of Detour, I became the head of the 59th because nobody else was willing to take the job. Kate took that personally, which I can't really blame her for, and severed her ties with the SRR. I'm sorry I never got the chance to mend fences.

So, yeah. I hope someone preserves her website (or better yet, manages to carry on her work) and I hope people remember what she did for fandom. Still no cure for cancer, but at least we have some quality combat SF on DVD to enjoy while we're waiting.