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‘A shining light’: Victoria singer-songwriter Caroline Spence dies at 53

Caroline Spence took her last breath Tuesday after a battle with cancer
Victoria singer-songwriter and promoter Caroline Spence has died after a difficult battle with cancer. (Courtesy Adam Basterfield)

Victoria singer-songwriter and promoter Caroline Spence has died after a battle with cancer.

In a social media post, Spence’s husband Adam Basterfield announced Spence’s death Tuesday (April 11) at the age of 53.

“She meant the world to me, and touched the lives of so many people, especially in the music scene we were part of,” Basterfield wrote. “Caroline was the most beautiful, loving, selfless and determined person I ever knew, and we shared a beautiful life together. She made me a better musician and, more importantly, a better, more loving and compassionate person.”

Spence and Basterfield started progressive-rock band Spaceport Union in 2010, and they played their final show in June 2021 in Duncan.

Spence’s other musical groups included Crimson Star, Pink Floyd tribute band PIGS, aiti maa and the Caroline Spence Band.

“Caroline is a pillar in the music community here and across Canada,” Victoria singer-songwriter and Spence’s longtime friend Anneda Loup said. “I don’t know anyone as selfless as her. Very few people really know how much she did. She would do so much to help me get gigs. She was the most positive and joyful spirit. You can’t help but be happy when you were with her.”

Spence’s dying wish was to have a green burial. A GoFundMe page started before her death has stopped accepting donations after raising $13,336 for the burial.

“She has been a good friend to me, truly family, a guiding hand along my career, and a shining light I have looked to over the years,” Loup said. “She has been both in the spotlight and behind the scenes making true magic happen for me and so many other musicians. I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for her help and support.”  

READ MORE: U.S. woman brings ashes to Victoria to see Jason Isbell play on anniversary of partner’s death


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Brendan Mayer

About the Author: Brendan Mayer

I spent my upbringing in Saskatoon, and in 2021, I made the move to Vancouver Island.
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