Dear Friends of Wild South,

It is with great sadness that I report the loss of one of our beloved staff members, Kayah Gaydish.  Kayah died on Sunday, December 20, in a climbing accident near Abingdon, Virginia. This remarkable young woman was the North Carolina Conservation Coordinator for Wild South and worked tirelessly as a wilderness advocate and volunteer for a variety of organizations. She was the epitome of a champion for the environment and is remembered as a smart, strong and compassionate person who was excellent at her two favorite things – being a mom and protecting the environment.




We are all grieving the loss of this talented friend and co-worker.  A fund has been created and all of the money donated will go directly to the family to aid her two surviving teenage children. If you wish to make a contribution, you can visit www.youcaring.com/kayahgaydish.

There will be a memorial and benefit for Kayah’s children on January 8, 2016, at the Grey Eagle in Asheville. Please click here learn more. We hope you will be able to attend and support her children.

Although no words can ease the grief for friends and family, I leave you all with these words written by Brian Claflin.

“Up on the mountain, deep is the darkness,
Deep is the darkness that surrounds you and me;
But deep in the darkness, the stars are shining,
The stars are shining, far as the eye can see.”

For the Wild,

Terry Deal
Wild South Board Chair

P.S. Here are links from WLOS TV-13 and the Asheville Citizen-Times with stories about Kayah and the difference she made in all our lives.