All of Doctor Who fandom is wishing to have had one more big hug for Sarah Jane Smith, as actress Elisabeth Sladen has died of cancer on April 19, 2011 at age 63.

While reading the growing number of obituary notices and tribute comments across the web, it occurred to me that Sladen and my mom are (were?) nearly the same age. So when I review the old Doctor Who episodes she appeared in back in ’73 – ’76,  I think to myself, Wow, my mom was quite young back then too.

With or without the Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith the journalist is inquisitive and resourceful, qualities which won Sladen the hearts of fans spanning several generations. Likewise, her professionalism was appreciated by her peers. Sladen was still working on CBBC’s The Sarah Jane Adventures, and scheduled to record Doctor Who audio adventures with former cast-mate Tom Baker, further proving the adage that ‘age is just a number.’

But as we are not Time Lords with all the time-travelling powers they possess, seize the moment to give your loved one an extra big hug today.