Olivia Marne passed away a month ago.
And I now know it’s time I said goodbye.
Why has it taken me so long to write something publicly about Liv? I don’t really know.. I guess one part of it is the thinking that if I don’t bring attention to it, and if I didn’t speak or type it, then her death isn’t real. But it is. She’s gone. Three weeks after she was granted permission to leave her severely-damaged, but beautiful body, it’s sunk in that she’s now moved on – leaving only the memories we share of her behind, and the broken hearts that struggle to beat in her absence. She’s left us reminders that she was here – I know she’s the one that’s been cuing-up Cannonball by Lea Michele on the car stereo, for the ride to work every day – but her spirit has now gone on, no doubt transferred into the carrier of God’s next angel.
Liv and I met a few years back; we worked for a couple of the same magazines. Later, she’d work for my PR venture, and of course, Moviehole.
In early 2012, I got really sick. I didn’t know her too well, but feeling I’d helped her so much with jobs, and just being a good friend, she insisted she would do whatever she had to to help get me through it.
And she was a girl of her words. While every friend came forward during this time to help, it was Liv who simply.. did things.
‘What do you need?’ she would text every morning, knowing I wasn’t going to be able to get out anywhere.
And before she’d go to bed every night- just as a few other friends did too – she’d ask the same thing ‘Why do you need?’ and ‘I want to know the test results from today, text them back to me’ and ‘Forward me any of your work that needs doing.’
As you guys all remember, she took the reins on Moviehole – knowing if she didn’t, the website we’d all worked so hard at, and built such a solid audience and reputation for, would probably go under. All the staff got to know Liv very well during that time, and up until her death were quite close.
Whether it be doing constant drives to the Monash medical center, helping a friend walk after a hiccup, helping prepare a ready-to-go PR business (that was going to open for business shortly), or, as I said, managing Moviehole – and it’s staff; all of whom got very close to Liv as a result – nothing was ever a problem.
She was only with us a short time, but she left quite an impression. Whether it was her lively personality, her no-fuss attitude to helping anyone that needed her, or her mature outlook on life – she definitely knew how to live.
It’s as if Liv was visited by a messenger a few years ago and told to ‘live as loud as you can, love as much as you can, and take up every opportunity that you can, because you won’t be with us long – we need you up here’ because I don’t think I’ve ever met a more determined, focused, content and satisfied person.
As her mother joked at Liv’s funeral, she could also be somewhat stubborn, impatient and a little jealous. “She’d tell others, ‘I’ve worked for it’, so why would she just give in, shrug her shoulders and do a 180.’”
I’m sure she also wouldn’t argue that she’d also steamroll over anyone in the way of her dreams; if she saw something she wanted behind a frigid pole, she’d grease up her hands and pull that damn pole out of the way.
Apparently Liv got a bit of a hard time in high school by the school ‘mean girls’ because a) she wasn’t a tart with a bad reputation (and at 24, despite her good looks, had still only had 2 serious boyfriends; she believed ‘if they’re not ‘it’ material, then why waste the time, and why skip over other better opportunities? But more so, I think she was mostly about her reputation.
Knowing she wanted to work in the public eye, be it as a journalist or publicist, she wanted to have a good reputation and squeaky-clean past that wasn’t going to affect her image. She was a smart cookie. b) She was actually more interested in doing her home work and school work, and doing a good job on whatever it was that she was required to do, so she could get into a good college later c) She would prefer to spend her weekends reading books or learning a new hobby, than going out and partying.
Liv caught up with those high-school girls – that she loathed so much – late last year, who were apparently in awe of who she had become. While they were still “up to no good” as she put it – likely referring to whatever their careers were, or the fact they hadn’t yet broken their habit of dead-end boyfriends- she was working PR for movie stars and musicians, she attended movie premieres and VIP parties, she had met many, many celebs – some of whom would even know her by name, and she had an amazing career – one that, while only just beginning, was still impressive. Their jaws apparently dropped. Liv was blissfully happy and content, and they weren’t.
She obviously still struggled for acceptance at times – or she wouldn’t have even cared what the girls at the catch-up thought – and so longed to hear people tell her how ‘proud of her’ they were (she mentioned a couple of times she just wished to hear those words), but I think deep-down, she was the type of person she always wanted to be, doing exactly what she wanted to do, with the people she wanted to do it with.
Liv would talk of what her ‘fairytale’ future was, when she was at school, and her friends claim she told them that she got it – she got her fairytale.
There’s no other way to put it, Olivia loved life. Knowing she woke up every morning smiling because she was blissfully happy in both her personal and professional life, helps with the pain. As her mother reminded us recently, she went out at her most happiest, and I know it brings her parents comfort knowing their daughter had found the sort of divine happiness that most us can search our whole lives looking for.
She had found it.
You know that moment in the film “City Slickers”, where Billy Crystal says… well, watch :
She found her ‘one thing’ – her one thing; the thing that made her happy, the thing that made her life complete.
She had solved her inner puzzle, and with that, it was time to go.
You guys probably knew her as one of Moviehole’s best.
Others knew her as a first-rate publicist.
Her friends knew her for the life she had.
Others knew her for her bubbly, bright personality; always a delight to be around.
I knew her as… our Liv.
In case I never told you Liv, I was so proud of you. So, so proud.