RIP Matt Wootton, missing at sea

MATT WOOTTON, missing presumed dead in storm

I have the sad task of announcing that Matt Wootton is missing presumed dead, in a tragic set of events that unfolded early in June in the southern hemisphere. Matt was on a ‘slow travel’ trip around the world, and was travelling by yacht with six other people from New Zealand to Australia. As you may have seen in the media, the yacht was lost in a severe storm over a month ago. Though we cannot be absolutely certain until wreckage etc is found (a very extensive search and rescue operation has found absolutely nothing; the search has now been called off), the overwhelming probability is that the yacht was lost with all hands in the storm on June 4.

Matt was a stalwart of the Green Party. At a young age, he was elected External Communications Co-ordinator. In this capacity, he pioneered the Party’s ‘Real Progress’ rebrand.

He will also be remembered as a remarkable musical talent. For example, he performed movingly on the cello at Mike Woodin’s memorial. Now he, like Mike, is another tragically-young loss to the Green Party.

To get a sense of Matt’s ongoing brilliance and enthusiasm in the field of political communications, colleagues may wish to look at his contributions to the site that he and I hosted,

It is hoped that there will soon be a tribute website to Matt focussing on his ideas for changing the world; and that there will be a full-length piece on him in ‘Green World’ magazine.

Matt, at age 35, seems certain to be lost to us – a terrible loss to all who knew him personally and in his vibrant online life, to the Green Party and the wider movement, to the field of political communications, and, frankly, to the human race.

Rupert Read, July 2013


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