Linda Rapp is being remembered as someone who gave to her community both on and off the job.
The former Whitehorse city manager, who retired Jan. 1, passed away peacefully Jan. 28, the city said in a statement.
Rapp was also one of the founding members of the Paddlers Abreast team of breast cancer survivors who compete in the Yukon River Quest annually.
The city honoured Rapp with a moment of silence by staff at 11 a.m. on Jan. 31, with another moment of silence to be observed at the evening’s council meeting.
“I was very fortunate to work closely with Linda during my previous term on city council,” said Mayor Laura Cabott. “Linda cared very much about the city and the community, and devoted herself entirely to making Whitehorse a better place for everyone. And she succeeded in that. She will be greatly missed.”
While Rapp’s work with the city began in 1984 in recreation, her municipal career spanned four decades beginning with the Town of Faro where she also worked in recreation for five years before joining the City of Whitehorse.
Rapp’s career with the city saw her serve as the manager of parks and recreation, and the director of community and recreation services before taking on the role of city manager in 2018, which she had served in as an acting role previously.
Rapp was instrumental in the success of multiple projects and initiatives, city officials said, adding that she had “a leadership style and calming presence” valued by her coworkers.
Her work for a better community extended beyond the office with many remembering Rapp as a driving force behind Paddlers Abreast.
On the team’s Facebook page, many are sharing their memories of Rapp connected to a post written by Al Foster.
It was in 2001 that Rapp and 10 other breast cancer survivors got together to enter the Yukon River Quest as a voyageur canoe team competing in the race that would take them Whitehorse to Dawson, Foster stated in the post.
“Thus, began Paddlers Abreast and the many friendships that have lasted over the years,” the post reads. “Linda, like many of these women, entered the race year after year, putting on many kilometers of paddling on the Yukon (Linda 7,865Km).
“It was a rewarding experience watching Linda and the other woman and their supporters pull together every year to get them on their way to Dawson. You really felt they were living a full life after cancer and providing a supportive environment for others.”
NFB film River of Life shares the story of the team competing in the 2006 race.
Foster recalled Rapp’s “huge smile” in one scene where she’s in the the stern of the boat.
Rapp is featured throughout the film, speaking about the team, its goals and her own experience.
The film can be streamed at www.nfb.ca/film/river_of_life/
Contact Stephanie Waddell at firstname.lastname@example.org