Vijay deSelby-Bowen Passes Away

Vijay Bowen at Boskone 34 in 1997. Photo by Rob Hansen.

Vijay Bowen at Boskone 34 in 1997. Photo by Rob Hansen.

Past TAFF winner Velma J. “Vijay” deSelby-Bowen died October 18 in Seattle after a long struggle against cancer.

As the 1999 Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund delegate she attended Reconvene, the British Eastercon in Liverpool. When notified she’d won, Vijay told Dave Langford, “The first thing I believe I said was ‘AAAAIIIIIEEEEE!’” While she never wrote a trip report, she definitely left her mark as the subject of photos taken at the con and published in Hot Ansible Action.

She was related to another TAFF delegate, Elliot Shorter (1970), her first cousin once removed.

Vijay discovered fandom in New York around 1982. She became active in Lunarians, serving as club secretary, and worked on Lunacons.

Her life adventures included modeling rubber and latex clothing which she described in an article for Science Fiction Five-Yearly titled “A Model Fan or, Your Ass Is on the Net.”

When she needed cancer surgery in 2013, her friends in fandom raised funds to help with her medical expenses.

She is survived by her longtime companion Soren (Scraps) deSelby.

[Via Curt Phillips on TAFF FB page.]

4 thoughts on “Vijay deSelby-Bowen Passes Away

  1. That is dreadfully sad news. My condolences to her family and friends, both as a fellow fan and a (rather later) TAFF delegate.

  2. Velma/Vijay was a force of nature. I knew her through an APA we were both in (more than a few years back…) and her style, humor, grace, caring and creativity shown like a star going nova in her work. She will be greatly missed by all those fortunately to have known her, even at a distance. A nova shines oh so bright, even seen from far away!

  3. Slight edit: the raised funds (by Debbie Notkin) was in July 2014. Velma’s fight against cancer was less than three months. Not lengthy: it seemed to me scarily quick. The hospital stay was about six weeks.

    Thank you for writing this, Mike (and a great photo, Rob). I’m devastated. But it helps to read about Velma, somehow.

  4. OMG!
    Baruch dayan ha-emet.
    My deepest sympathy and condolences to her family and all her friends! May her Memory Be for a Blessing!

Comments are closed.