Sunday, January 07, 2007

a loss for the activist community and Food Not Bombs..

Filmmaker's slaying shocks Halifax community

Last Updated: Friday, January 5, 2007 | 4:08 PM ET

Members of the filmmaking community in Halifax are mourning Helen Hill, an animator and social activist who was shot to death in New Orleans on Thursday.

Hill, 36, was killed and her husband, Dr. Paul Gailiunas, was injured in the attack in their Louisiana home early Thursday morning. It was the city's sixth fatal shooting in 24 hours.

Police said officers found Gailiunas, 35, kneeling at the front door clutching the couple's two-year-old son in his arms. The boy wasn't hurt.

Walter Forsyth, executive director of the Atlantic Filmmakers Co-operative, said his friend Hill will be remembered for much more than the work she produced.

"She's really giving," he said. "She came here to make films and ended up starting Food Not Bombs and just helping people out on the street."

Halifax Food Not Bombs is a non-profit, volunteer run organization dedicated to providing free vegetarian meals to the local community.

Hill, from South Carolina, moved to Halifax in 1995 and made a name for herself through her animation work, as well as for her social activism.

Gailiunas won a humanitarian award from Dalhousie University when he graduated from medical school and helped set up the first charity foot clinic in Halifax.

Hill and Gailiunas left Halifax five years ago to live in New Orleans, the city where they first met.

New Orleans police don't have any suspects, nor any possible motives for the shootings.

But one neighbour said it was just like Hill and Gailiunas to open their door to someone in the wee hours thinking the person on the other side needed help.

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