Chandra (Jessica Paulding-James) peacefully left her body Wednesday 1st February evening in Ojai, California, only a few months after being diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma. She thought to return again to Auroville for a last visit with friends and family living here, though finally there wasn’t time. She would have been 80 in June.
First coming to Auroville in 1974 she and her then partner David Paulding stayed in Utility with Mali, helping to plant trees as part of Auroville’s reforestation work. She continued as a resident of India for 11 years then returned to live in California, while visiting Auroville a number of times over the years since – most recently in 2011 – along with her husband Ian James (Sucinno).
Many who knew her from early days and also those who met her later on will remember her as a strong and independent spirit, full of light and a keen sense of adventure. She helped many people along the path, and helped make a way for others to come after. She is held in memory by her daughter Isha and partner Christopher, her grandson Chris and his wife Laura, their sons Kai and Ari, her 2nd daughter Maya and her daughters Leia and Lily, as well as many friends here and around the world.