PORTLAND, Ore — It was announced Thursday, June 7 that Valerie L. Walker, also known as Veedub, had passed away in the early morning hours. Veedub was a longtime member of the Feri community, a Witch, an author, artist, singer, priestess, and beloved teacher. Valerie Walker was born May 16 in London, England to Bee Brown and Louis Langham. Her family eventually moved to Chicago where she attended Roger Sullivan High School in Chicago. Veedub’s spiritual journey began around 1955 when, at the age of 18, she discovered Robert Graves’ The White Goddess.
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PORTLAND, Ore. — Four years ago, T. Thorn Coyle was sitting in her home in Berkeley, California, gazing outside at the sycamores swaying in the breeze when she thought, “I hate these trees.”
This is the writer who, in her 2004 book Evolutionary Witchcraft, had proclaimed in its opening paragraph: “In Witchcraft, I found my place in nature, and in nature, I found my connection to all things.”
This is the former Catholic girl who left the church at age 16 to study the Craft, made her way from the Quaker-founded Los Angeles suburb of Whittier to San Francisco, was initiated into Reclaiming, studied with Sufis, studied with Feri tradition founders Victor and Cora Anderson, and then was initiated as a priestess and witch in that tradition in 1996.
Last week we reported that the website Lilith’s Lantern had been shut down. Founded in 2003, the site was run by the members of Mandorla coven, many of whom had worshiped with Feri tradition founders Victor and Cora Anderson. It was considered to be a resource that reflected a line of teaching that came directly from their mouths. Also called the Anderson tradition, and Faery and Faerie, the practice was eventually called “Feri” by Victor Anderson himself, and these varied names reflect the way this Pagan path has grown and evolved. Victor Anderson’s story of being initiated as a boy in the 1920s by a “tiny old woman” sitting in a circle he found one day in his native Oregon was recounted in Drawing Down the Moon.
[The following memorial is a guest post written by Niklas Gander’s husband and partner of 23 years, Willow Moon]
Dr. Thomas Johnson, also known as Niklas Gander, died Oct. 5, 2014, in Seattle, Washington. As he took his last breath, Willow Moon wiped the tears from his eyes and immediately performed the Tibetan Buddhist practice of Powa. This was to ensure Niklas’ rebirth in the Buddhist paradise of Dewachen or “The Land of Great Bliss,” a place of solace and comfort. There, he will meet his teachers and peers to gain greater knowledge and peace before moving on to another, better life.