On Saturday, 30th July, my friend and fellow Debian Developer Jens Schmalzing tragically passed away. When I learned about his death, I was shocked and have been mourning him ever since. Jens was not very publically active in the Debian community (he preferred to do work rather than discuss), nor did he attend Debian conferences or international events like LinuxTag, but he was an important part of our local Munich Debian Community. He frequently organized meetings, even back at the time when we met only very irregularly. He also co-organized the real-life Bug-Squashing-Party in Munich last year (providing rooms at his university institute, besides others) and represented Debian at local Linux events like Linux-Infotag Augsburg or Munich's Systems.
For me personally, Jens was also a friend, my Debian advocate, and one of the first Debian Developers I met personally. He perhaps also was the Debian person I met most frequently and we phoned each other occasionally or met privately, e.g. when we made the LaTeX layout of the Debian Flyer for LinuxTag 2002 (which later on got used for other events as well), when he managed to install Debian GNU/Linux on my (or rather my dad's) Apple Mac SE/30 and when we drove together to Linux-Infotag Augsburg last year show-casing FAI and Debian-Installer.
As he did not show up for the last few local Debian meetings, I was about to phone him to see whether he was fine. Now, I will never be able to do so again. Instead, I will remember the nice times we all had together with him during the various Debian meetings in beer gardens or pubs. My best wishes go to his widow and his three little sons.
Jens, you will be missed.