Sad news doing the rounds on Twitter and the blogosphere: Elisabeth Sladen, who played Sarah Jane on Doctor Who and the Sarah Jane Adventures, has passed away at age 63 from cancer.

I’ve been a fan of Doctor Who since I was very small. Some of my earliest memories are of watching the show at home with my brother, though he’ll deny it now :). Being the right age as the earlier series were first released on video I devoured her episodes. In my early to mid teens I attended some of the convention circuit, meeting a range of former stars of the show. I met Lis once during this time, as I tend to do with people whose work I admire: I was effusive in my praise and enthusiastic about wanting to write on the show should it ever return. I cringe when I remember my half of the conversation.

She was very kind, when she really didn’t have to be, and I’ve never forgotten that.

63 seems quite young these days, especially for her poor family.