Louder Than War has log championed the Antifolk founder and pioneer Lach, the Brooklyn-born singer-songwriter and cultural provocateur who created the Antihoot at New York’s Sidewalk (the city’s longest-running open mic). Having inspired and nurtured two generations of New York artists, many of whom went on to achieve notable success, Lach relocated to Edinburgh a few years ago with his wife Anu and their young son Henry.
On November 1st this year, Lach shared on his Facebook page the heartbreaking news that Anu had passed away after 8 years of living with cancer. The family had been supported during this time by the staff at Maggie’s Edinburgh, the ground-breaking cancer support centre inspired by the vision of the late Maggie Keswick Jencks and brought to fruition by Magge’s then-cancer nurse specialist, Laura Lee.
Lach has asked Louder Than War to highlight the family’s gratitude to Maggie’s for all their support and to encourage anyone reading this who is being impacted in any way by cancer to find out about the support services that the UK’s growing network of Maggie’s Centres offers.
Cancer too often brings crippling financial difficulties to a family, in addition to the human cost. The charity Sweet Relief is raising funds to provide emergency direct assistance to Lach and his son. With Lach’s consent, Louder Than War is sharing his statement below, which contains details of how you can support or contribute to the Sweet Relief benefit. Lach also wishes to express his heartfelt gratitude to Louder Than War, its readership and all those who are providing support at this difficult time.
Statement from Lach, November 1st 2019:
“My lovely wife and best friend, Anu Poldaru, passed away this week after living with cancer for the past eight years. There’s so much I want to say and share about her, but I just can’t right now. I need time to recover and process from this loss. Many of you have graciously asked how you can help me and my son as we deal with this major change in our lives and I’m very touched and grateful to report that some really special folks have established a benefit with the amazing organization Sweet Relief to assist us through these hard times we’re going through.
Over the past three years, I came off the steady touring circuit to be a full-time caregiver for my wife and son thus severely curtailing my main source of income. Anu’s social security disability has been critical in helping to provide for our family’s needs during this time, but that income source is now curtailed with her passing. Over the coming months I’ll be gathering my wits and hopefully getting back to performing live again, but in the meantime I need to keep the lights on, keep my head and heart together, and care for my son.
Thankfully, Sweet Relief is keeping our fund going for another month to help guide us through these rough waters. If you’d like to help out, please use this link and then click on the red button.
Sweet Relief is a registered 501 non-profit so all donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law. Sweet Relief is an amazing outfit taking just 5% of donations for their kitty to help other musicians in need (musicians who don’t have friends who can help).
Finally, I’d like to thank everyone who has helped us over the years. Cancer is a demonic, unforgiving disease but in our darkest times there was ALWAYS a friend reaching out and holding us and for that my gratitude is unending.As my son and I start to navigate this new chapter in our lives please forgive me if I’m unable to reply to any emails, texts, comments here on Facebook, or even phone calls, as it’s all too overwhelming right now, but please know how much I appreciate everyone’s heartfelt wishes and support.
With love and gratitude
All words by Gus Ironside.