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Working Group on New TB Drugs

Stop TB Partnership

12 Oct 2011

Winstone’s Voice

Winstone in Seattle, 2005

As has been widely reported, we lost Winstone Zulu, a tireless advocate for TB/HIV (see more info at the TB Alliance and ACTION). I was lucky to have been able to work with Winstone over the years – his greeting was always a hearty: “So when are you coming to Zambia?” I had to laugh because he always seemed to be everywhere all at once, on a tireless global journey to promote TB/HIV awareness.

But he was tired – often exhausted from battling his illness, adverse reactions to therapy, and of course his punishing schedule. And yet, to know him was to marvel at his indomitable spirit, which rarely seemed to miss an opportunity to do some good in the world.

Chief among Winstone’s gifts was the ability to speak with passion about his subject, finding the precise balance between hard facts, personal history, and an inspiring call to action. In 2003, we collaborated on a video to raise awareness about TB/HIV co-infection. The title, “Winstone Zulu is Alive” came from a conversation in which Winstone explained that since the average life expectancy in Zambia was 40 (his figure), he was already living on borrowed time and it was important to remind people that he was still around.

Now that Winstone has passed, the title seems all the more poignant: if you listen to his profoundly moving voice, you realize that his spirit remains very much with us.

John-Michael Maas

Winstone Zulu boarding a ferry in Seattle, 2005

 

Make a donation to support Winstone’s family

RESULTS has set up an account to make donations to help support Winstone’s family. In order to alert RESULTS that your contribution is for the Winstone Zulu Memorial Fund, you must copy and paste “Winstone Zulu Memorial Fund” into the field that asks, “Who invited you to give to us?” Click here to make a donation.

One Response to “Winstone’s Voice”

  1. Kate Greenaway says:

    I’m at a real loss for words. Profoundly sad. He was one of the first people I met, back in the dark days when AIDS had Zambia firmly in its grip, when only a few had the courage to speak up. Winstone patiently and candidly articulated the experience of HIV for me (and so many others) who were floundering, grasping at straws, trying to understand HIV well enough to create programming that would respond… And he continued to do that over the years, first with promoting testing, then treatment, then TB/HIV which he represented from his heart as no one else could. The world is a better place because of his efforts. As we grieve, we must also rededicate ourselves to honoring his legacy, by reaching more people with better services. Rest in peace Winstone — we’ll take it from here!



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