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Ingrid Wall with her husband Joachim and her son, Tom. Foto: TT

Här är Ingrid Walls tal på Columbia university

The one who made a journey, has something to tell.
The German journalist and author Matthias Claudius wrote these Words at the end of the 1800´s.

This saying describes maybe better than anything else, our Kim. Her entire life has been a journey and it has brimmed with a lot of stories. We, who had the benefit of sharing Kim’s paths for shorter or longer time, know what a fantastic ability she had for telling us about small and big issues alike. No matter if it was about the current situation in foreign policy or the latest trend in vegan cooking – Kim was always in the know, and she let us share it with her.

”The world was hers to discover”

Already as a kid, Kim was inventive, persistent and very determined. When she thought that the bedtime stories we read to her, was far too short – she learned to read on her own. Nothing was impossible; everything should be tested at least once, she believed. For Kim there were no boundaries, the world was hers to discover.

In the year 2011 she expressed her future plans in the local newspaper this way:

I want to know how the world works and hope that I maybe one day can learn enough to make a difference to the better.

Born and raised in a family of journalists, Kim was well aware of the advantages and disadvantages of the profession, not at least in these days. But there was never any doubt, Kim had made the decision – she should become a journalist! The joy in her voice when she told us that she was accepted to the J School at Columbia was boundless. The adventure was to begin!

”We were worried many times”

During the years in the US and all her trips around the world, we’ve got small glimpses of her life. An e-mail, a Skype call, a request for a small loan when the ATM guzzled her credit card. Occasionally we got a picture, taken on the fly, that told us about her whereabouts. It could be a backpack for cats, an especially beautiful tree, food stalls on the market or something else that she knew should amuse the old ones at home.

Of course we were worried many times. Kim hiked by train alone in the south of China, went on a motorbike in Burma and showed fascinated girls in North Korea what to do with nail polish. The parental worry was some kind of normal condition, but we knew that Kim was careful and didn’t take any risks.

”Humanity needs more courageous women like Kim”

Those worries were put on ”hold” this summer. Kim was in Copenhagen, a 45 minutes train ride away from home. Ahead of her waited a year in China with Ole, the love of her life. Several stories were already in the pipeline, contracts written and the economy fairly secured. The last assignment in Copenhagen focused on the two Danish space programs, a story about a modern space run in a microscopic view. Kim would interview with this submarine-constructor, who planned to be the first private person in space. A couple of hours of work, then waited the last preparations for the move to China.

Now we have the answer – Kim did not return. There are many questions still to be answered, but we, and the rest of world will not get Kim back. Her journey ended here and we have been deprived of all the untold stories she would have loved to tell us. Humanity needs more courageous women like Kim, women who want and dare to tell, give their voices to the weak ones and make this planet a better place to live.

Kim – we miss you!
/Ingrid Wall

Fotnot. En översättning av talet kommer senare under eftermiddagen.

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