Tributes are flowing in for comedian, disability activist, journalist, author and broadcaster Stella Young, who died suddenly at the age of 32 on Saturday evening.
Comedian Josh Thomas tweeted: “Stella Young is so terrific. A hilarious, rare and super cool lady. Heart breaking news.”
Paralympian Kurt Fearnley tweeted that the world would be “less interesting” without Stella, who “fearlessly challenged every stereotype of disability”.
Mamamia’s own Mia Freedman remembered Stella as a “fiesty, glorious woman”, while the Mamamia Women’s Network’s editor-in-chief Jamila Rizvi wrote: “Missing my clever, feisty, impossibly determined friend @stellajyoung. The world would have been far better if she’d had more time in it.”
ABC Managing Director Mark Scott issued a statement calling Stella “an unforgettable communicator and a passionate advocate”.
“As a writer and broadcaster Stella was sharp and incisive, challenging and provocative. She was very warm and generous, the first to laugh and to make us all laugh,” he said.
“Stella helped us understand disability issues by sharing with a raw honesty about her own life and forcing us to reconsider how we think about disability and create an environment where those with disability can best get on with their own lives. She took great delight in challenging conventional wisdom and lazy thinking.
“In the best traditions of public broadcasting: she informed, she educated and she entertained.
“It is so hard to believe we have all lost Stella at such a young age. She was so talented, so widely loved and respected. The more people heard her, the more the opportunities in her career were growing. This week she was scheduled to record more ABC radio. She was increasingly in demand as a comedian in Australia and with a growing international reputation.
“Her many friends at the ABC are filled with sadness at this news – as are Australians around the country, who loved and admired her columns, her broadcasts and her comedy performances.”
Feel free to leave your own tribute to Stella Young below.