Although the thought that Emma is no longer with us brings tears to my eyes, when memories of our time together come to mind, I smile.
I met Emma in 2007 when we were both studying for our PhDs at The University of Manchester. Soon our relationship grew into a close friendship, and we spent a lot of time mostly at Emma’s house but sometimes outdoors.
One of our special moments was the day of her viva. I remember sitting there in the examination room watching her skilfully and confidently respond to one question after the other. Her examiners were engaged throughout, and eventually agreed that she would be awarded the degree with no corrections (which is rather unusual). It was great to share that special moment of achievement with her, and I still remember the long hug in the corridor outside the examination room.
Emma was committed to changing perceptions of mental health illness especially among young people. Even when she herself had her difficult times, this remained her dream of which her research was one reflection. Before completing her PhD, Emma’s work was already reaching out to wider segments of the society as exemplified here:
Although Emma has departed us, her legacy remains. I will continue to cherish our time together, and she will always be in my heart.