Several months ago, Cyrano’s Journal’s Editor-in-Chief, Rowan Wolf, after being implored to do so by Cyrano’s staff, reluctantly made an appeal for contributions to facilitate her qualifying for an organ transplant. Rowan suffered from pulmonary arterial hypertension, which had irreversibly ravaged her lungs and damaged her heart.
Before proceeding, some history of Cyrano’s genesis is in order. Patrice Greanville, an accomplished economist and journalist, published the first hard copy issue of Cyrano’s Journal* in 1982. Without a trace of affectation, he sought to make Cyrano’s a nonpareil publication—not only addressing the myriad inequities, but the systemic flaws inherent in capitalism’s fabric. Unfortunately, despite its strengths and contributions, especially to the analysis of capitalist media, Cyrano’s Journal foundered in 1985 due to inadequate funding, a fate common enough to progressive publications. The rise of the Internet, however, gave the Cyrano project a new lease on life, and in 2001 the online edition made its debut.
As Cyrano’s Journal gradually gained a foothold and eventually established itself as a serious venue for genuine left fact and opinion, the editors launched a sister publication, The Greanville Post, and thus the search began for a consummate professional to take the helm of Cyrano’s. We didn’t have far to look, as Rowan was already part of Cyrano’s family, as well as a sociologist and ardent activist. The profound concern was whether this would compound her already considerable adversity, but Rowan possesses a resolute moral compass. Not even a pernicious disease was going to impede the furtherance of her ideals, and that is the measure of this remarkable woman.
Enough prefatory background, as the glorious news is that Rowan received a successful lung transplant last week at Stanford Medical Center, and now begins a lengthy recuperation period. This ordeal, however, has been more a portrait of an extraordinary woman than a merciless disease. Even moments before her surgery and upon awakening, her thoughts were not about her own peril, but expressions of concern about her partner, friends, four-legged companions, Cyrano’s family, and everyone and everything but herself.
In a culture permeated with narcissism, in which self-interest above community passes for normal, Rowan stands apart like a meteor racing across a pitch-black sky. She embodies the principles that Cyrano’s Journal and The Greanville Post were founded upon, as her generosity of spirit serves as a striking contrast to the predatory climate of contemporary culture. All of us who have had the privilege of loving and being loved by Rowan are immeasurably richer for it.
Now a new chapter in Rowan’s long struggle commences. Even with insurance, transplant-related expenses that are not reimbursable can reach $50,000 the first year, and $10,000 for every year thereafter. For those of you who can spare a few dollars, please make a tax-deductible donation to the National Transplant Assistance Fund (NTAF), designating your donation for Rowan Wolf. The address is: NTAF, 150 N. Radnor Chester Rd., Radnor, PA 19087, or call 1-800-642-8399. You can also visit: www.ntafund.org. For those of you unable to contribute, please spread the word to colleagues, family, and friends.
Thank you on behalf of Rowan, as well as all of us who embrace her as family.
Note: Those wishing to learn more about the background of this publication can check out this page: At Long Last, Cyrano.