2 years ago · 2,862 notes · Reblogged from knowhomo

Gay Man Honors Boyfriend’s Death
With Poignant Video Noting Lack Of Rights Offered To Unwed Same-Sex Couples

A California-based gay man is marking the one-year anniversary of his boyfriend’s untimely death with a new video that’s both a poignant memorial and a testimony to the lack of rights provided to same-sex couples barred from getting married under current laws.

Titled It Could Happen To You,” the clip contains heartwarming anecdotes about the relationship between Shane Bitney Crone and Tom Bridegroom, who were committed to one another for six years. “We started a business, owned a home and traveled the world together,” Crone, a Montana native, recalls in the video.

But after the pair decided to come out to their families, Crone says Bridegroom’s parents were outraged. “When Tom returned to Indiana to visit his parents for Christmas, his father threatened him with a gun and physically attacked him.”

After Bridegroom’s untimely death on May 7, 2011, Crone was barred from attending the funeral and wake, and wasn’t mentioned in the obituary. His experience trying to obtain information from the hospital was similarly unsuccessful. “To Tom’s family, I no longer existed, and to the government, Tom and I were mere roommates,” Crone notes.

Crone concludes: “I need to fight for what’s right. I need to fight for what I believe in and I can’t just stand back anymore. Maybe that’s why this all happened, maybe this is part of the reason…is to open my eyes and to inspire me to want to make a change and to want to fight for equality.”

A memorial page in honor of Bridegroom has been launched on Facebook. Click here for the page.

2 years ago · 376 notes · Source

Alexis Rivera, Transgender Rights Advocate, Dies In California

California’s transgender community is mourning the loss of one of its most accomplished and revered leaders this week.

A number of media outlets are reporting that Alexis Rivera, 34, died March 28 of complications related to HIV in San Francisco. Officials for the Transgender Law Center, where Rivera had worked as a policy advocate since 2007, wrote in an email statement:

"Alexis advocated for statewide policy change and trained hundreds of transgender community members to build relationships with their elected officials. During this time, Alexis was also a leader of the Transgender Law Center’s Health Care Access Project and helped secure affordable transgender health care services in several counties across California.

Alexis received many awards and honors in recognition of her leadership, including the Trans-Unity Trailblazer and Spirit Awards, the Latino Caucus on HIV Prevention Leadership Award, and the first QUEST Advocacy Pageant sash in 2002.”

A blogger identifying themselves only as “Alexis’ sister” also wrote, “Alexis was an amazing community activist. She was also a mother. She also became a grandmother a month before she died. She was also a sister, a daughter, a grand-daughter and and an aunt. She was a mentor to so many, and a friend to many, many more.”

Added Masen Davis, Executive Director of Transgender Law Center, in a statement: “She understood that we are stronger together, and she kept organizing until the very end. Alexis’ death is a reminder that the fight for equality — and against AIDS — is far from over.”

In describing her commitment and passion for her community, Rivera is quoted as having stated, “My activism is rooted from love.”

Memorials for Rivera will be held this weekend in both Los Angeles and San Francisco.

This is such a sad loss; for more, click here.

2 years ago · 2 notes · Source