In Memory of Karen Oberg

On Monday, November 30th, Vegan Outreach lost a dear friend and a hero to the animals – Karen Oberg, volunteer and mother to John Oberg, VO’s Director of Communications. Karen lost her long battle with cancer.

Karen and John

The first time I met Karen, a few of us had just finished leafleting the Warped Tour in Detroit, and we came back to sleep at her place, which was nearby. We were tired and hungry, and we arrived to a bounty of cooked veggie burgers, homemade fries, and fixin’s that Karen joyously offered us, which we happily devoured. And little did we know that when we all slept in beds that night, Karen quietly went off to a room and slept on the floor. She gave us all the available beds and didn’t even let us know of the sacrifice she made for us.

Karen was also a dedicated VO leafleter. Despite being diagnosed with cancer, she would still join John for leafleting, putting in some impressive days of outreach. On a leafleting outing just this past September, she personally handed out over 800 booklets — from a wheelchair!


How John treated Karen during this time was the stuff of legend. John moved back to Michigan to be there for his mom and was with her at all times, taking her to appointments, to concerts, sports events, etc. Here’s a heartwarming video of John catching a fly ball at a Detroit Tigers game and giving the ball to Karen. John truly set the gold standard for how we should treat our loved ones during a time of illness.

Karen will be remembered as someone who showered others with kindness, generosity, joy, and humor in the face of great adversity. Thank you for all you did to bring more compassion into this world, Karen.

We at Vegan Outreach will miss you immensely.

– Jon Camp

5 thoughts on “In Memory of Karen Oberg

  1. I never had the pleasure of meeting Karen in person, but it was obvious how amazing she was just from glancing at her son John’s Facebook posts. I have contributed to Vegan Outreach in her memory, and I hope others will do the same. I’m glad that Vegan Outreach is recognizing her amazingness in this way. May her memory live on!

  2. Great tribute to an incredibly kind and generous soul. It’s quite obvious Karen has touched SO many lives, all over the world. Not just people’s; animals’ too. Forever in our hearts! <3

  3. I never knew Karen or even of her– just read this post and the post on Instagram. However, it appears to me that she was a wonderful person in general in addition to a wonderful parent. Furthermore, if her son is reading this, I just want to say you seem like you were incredible to her as well. I’m so sorry for your loss. The Earth was graced with her compassion and love. Hope you are all doing well.

  4. Jon, much thanks for your thoughtful and heartfelt words for and about Karen and John…It’s wonderful to hear the stories about them!

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