Mary Travers; of the group Peter, Paul & Mary; has passed away. Perhaps most known for “Puff the Magic Dragon” you might also recognize their tunes “Leaving on a Jet Plane” and “Lemon Tree”. Something that caught my eye while reading about this group and Mary’s death at the age of 72 after slowly succumbing to Leukemia was just how active the group and Mary were in fighting for civil rights through music:
“The trio walked a fine line, appealing to liberals and anti-war activists, and raising the consciousnesses of the interested, but also entertaining middle-of-the-road listeners, and especially to parents who felt their music was safe for younger children. They were accomplishing precisely what the Weavers had set out to do a decade and a half earlier (and, not coincidentally, also exactly what the Weavers’ political opponents had feared the latter group would do, spreading liberal ideas and politics on the popular landscape with pretty music).”
It is always discouraging to lose those who battle for the rights of all to have a voice in the world and I wanted to take a big old fat moment of silent respect for Mary’s efforts in life. Not just because she was born in November only one day after me (not counting years of course); or because perhaps having a tall, thin, blond, beautiful woman fighting for any cause may have turned just a few more heads towards considering the injustices in the world than she may have otherwise; but because anyone who fights for the dis-empowered has my personal respect.
Rest in peace and dignity Mary Travers.