Saturday, February 19, 2011

Jocelyn Clarke

Jocelyn Clarke was born in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. She would later move to Vancouver, British Columbia to pursue her dream to be a kick ass stunt performer. In 1998, Jocelyn would get her first big break doing on a film called FUTURESPORT opposite Dean Cain, Vanessa Williams, and Wesley Snipes. Her role would be actress/stunt performer in the role of Park. And that was only the beginning.

Joceyln's drive, ambition, and incredible work ethic would make her stand out and keep her working. She would appear as a stunt performer in televsion and made for television movies - HAPLESS, NIGHT MAN, and SECRET AGENT MAN - before landing a stunt performing gig in the scary death comes a'knocking thriller, FINAL DESTINATION. You don't often get to see a real life action hero, Jocelyn was of the ilk that super hero stories come from and this was just while she was doing what she loved - creating amazing action sequences on film and television.

From her start in 1998, Jocelyn would be constantly working. Her brazen and ballsy attitude would make her a first pick for all sorts of 'crazy shit' production would require of her stunt performers. You can see her brilliant work in films and shows like: DEAD LIKE ME, SMALLVILLE, ANDROMEDA, V, BONES, ROLLERBALL, FREDDY GOT FINGERED, THE A-TEAM, and 30 DAYS OF NIGHT: DARK DAYS.

In November of 2009, Jocelyn was diagnosed with the rarest and most aggressive form of lung cancer. This bleak sentence would have crushed a lesser human being, but Jocelyn's light and strength could never be extinguished. She didn't slow down for a second but rather used the diagnosis to fight even harder. I must say this before moving on, the sense of community and love and respect in the Vancouver film scene floors me time and time again. These are some of the highest quality of people and talent the whole world over. Jocelyn was not alone in her fight, the community was there to fight beside her.

"Thank you to my friend Charlie Bewley who plays Demetri in the Twighlight series for auctioning his Twighlight t-shirts in Germany to support my struggle. Of all the causes he could have chosen to support he approached me. In May he is running an ultramarathon here in Vancouver to continue to help raise funds! We will be cheering each other on, (i aint runnin) You are an incredible man Charlie. I'm so greatful!" -Jocelyn Clarke

"My dad's hockey team The Waterloo Aging Bulls created a calendar to support myself the Canadian Cancer Society. Amazing group of men and women worked their butts off (hint) to make this happen. It's hilarious! One way or another we all have been touched by this insidious disease and your purchase of this calendar will help find a cure. Beware: bare butts. Haha!" -Jocelyn Clarke

Fight? The costs for her treatment were in the excess of forty five thousand dollars. This was just the cost for one year. Charity events, auctions, and donations were created to help support Jocelyn. She always stayed positive and strong and handled her situation with good humor. As a person who has had that horrible fucking disease touch my life too, I know what a challenge that can be. Fuck cancer. Absolutely. Not even the rarest, most aggressive form could slow this woman down.

"Kit breaks his neck and leg and the day after I was diagnosed with terminal cancer. How fucked up is that. We are doing well now."
-Jocelyn Clarke

One of Jocelyn's dreams in her stunt work was to do a full body burn. It's like the stunt to do. Yes, there is an element of danger as there is with all and any stunt, but when done by a group of trained professionals that sense of danger is greatly diminished and that stunt is visually spectacular. A couple weeks ago, that dream was turned into reality when David Barkes (SPFX Coordinator), Dustin Brook, and Colin Decker (Fire guys) came together to set this badass chick on fire. These are also the sensational and wonderful people who made the full body burn in DEAD HOOKER IN A TRUNK possible.

Below is the clip of the burn - where Jocelyn moves around serenely like being set on fire is no big. For her, it was one of many huge things she would accomplish in her inspirational life. She did it with panache, she did it with class, she did it with a 'fuck cancer' shirt on.

"A major item on my bucket list has been fulfilled. I really wanted to do a full body burn. For those that don't know, I was a stuntwoman. This is a shot of a fire burn I did wearing the Fuck Cancer t-shirt from a non profit organization. When the project is finished I will post it. It was shot in 2D and 3D. It is comedic to those who have a sense of tumor. :-D Alot of dear friends are making this happen for me. I am so very greatful to them." -Jocelyn Clarke

On February, 14th, 2011 - this past Monday - Jocelyn passed away in the afternoon. She did not lose her fight with cancer and I will share the heartfelt, beautiful words by Kit Mallet who was there for her battle and the end:

Jocelyn Clarke

Passed away Monday Afternoon February 14th 2011 after being diagnosed with the rarest, most aggressive form of lung cancer in November of 2009.

We have all heard the saying "Lost the fight against cancer". Well, Jocelyn certainly did not lose. To lose is to not appreciate those moments, to not challenge the odds and to not surround yourself with love. She did win the fight! For her entire stunt career she wanted to be set on fire and two weeks ago we were able to make that dream come alive. For that moment the cancer did not exist! It also did not exist during all the charity events put on for her... It was pure joy and love she felt. We had been planning a dream vacation and in all those moments she felt excitement and happiness. Cancer was not an thought. I was taught a great lesson from her as well as many other friends I am sure. Enjoy life, make today count, and don't forget to say to your loved ones "I love you!".

On Thursday evening Jocelyn was rushed to the hospital. I met the ambulance at the entrance of emergency. Her breathing was labored and she was exhausted. Over the following three days she realized that this was her time. Just after midnight on Monday she opened her eyes and smiled. She asked me if her brother arrived from Ontario yet. She was so close to her passing and I told her to hold on and that he was half an hour away. Matthew finally arrived and she was able to see him. The rest of her time with loved ones was peaceful. Throughout the whole time her father Ron Clarke was by her bedside. "Mikey" (as Joce called him) Mike Desabrais and Johnna Sparrow Crawford were Pillars of strength as well for her. My apologies for not naming everyone but you know who you are!

Jocelyn discovered how many beautiful people there were in her life. Not only life long friends but others who came in after her diagnosis. Many offered to drive her to treatments, or simply to share a smile with. On behalf of Jocelyn I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to all of you who made her final months "the time of her life"....

Kit Mallet....

I had never met the woman, but I have heard stories about her through the community. She was a beacon of strength and had a vibrance about her that couldn't be stopped by anyone. May you rest in peace, Jocelyn Clarke. Thank you for being a real life badass that we girls can dream to emulate.


1 comment:

  1. Amazing article!! Thank you for showing how incredible a women Jocelyne was. She was a awsome performer, co worker and lady.... she will be forever missed!