July 16, 1945 – February 18, 2017
Mary Barbara Virginia Banister, co-owner with her life partner Wendy Robertson of the Touch of Country Mall, was born in Detroit and later lived in Warren before moving to Howell in 1972. Before acquiring the antique mall, she worked for various lumber, hardware, and nursery stores. Banister was a devoted member of Hardy United Methodist Church.
Livingston Daily Press and Argus, February 21, 2017
November 22, 1945 – December 30, 1999
Hairstylist Ronald Lorence Owens grew up in New Mexico and served in the U.S. Army from 1967 to 1970, honorably discharged as a Specialist 5 in the Air Defense Artillery. He resided in Southern California before moving to Michigan, where he lived in Detroit and Rochester. Owens was a member of the Metropolitan Community Church of Detroit.
Cruise, February 2, 2000
July 13, 1945 – September 5, 1994
Chester Cislo attended St. Casimir High School on Detroit’s West Side and worked as a sexton at St. James Catholic Church in Ferndale. Cislo represented the Detroit Together Men’s Chorus on the Detroit Area Gay/Lesbian Council, was active with Wellness Networks and the NAMES Project, and served on the board for Friends Alliance. He died from AIDS-related complications at age 49.
Cruise, September 28, 1994
September 12, 1945 – May 24, 2008
A Detroit native and a 1964 graduate of Livonia Bentley High School, Nancy Fitzgerald earned her Associate’s degree from Lansing Community College and her B.S. from Spring Arbor College in 1998. She worked as an LPN and held a number of management positions in health care and insurance. An avid motorcyclist, Fitzgerald and her partner Lisa Whitehead shared a home in Eaton Rapids.
Lesbian Connection, September/October 2008
August 28, 1945 – October 17, 2014
Marvil Thomas Shaw III was born in Battle Creek, grew up in Coldwater, and attended Alma College. A celibate gay monk ordained into the priesthood in 1971, Shaw became Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts in 1995. Throughout his tenure, he advocated for minority rights, for allowing women, gay men, and lesbians to be ordained, and for other causes of social justice.
Bay Windows, October 23, 2014
November 13, 1945 – November 29, 2013
Longtime Hudson resident and devoted Detroit Tigers and University of Michigan fan Cheryle Hudson was owner and operator of the Heritage House Adult Foster Care and later the Uptown Kafé.
Adrian Daily Telegram, December 3, 2013
August 22, 1945 – November 17, 1993
Wyandotte resident Gay Whiteside formed a chapter of the Daughters of Bilitis in Detroit in 1971. She was also active with the Gay Radio Collective and a longtime member of the Metropolitan Community Church of Detroit.
Detroit Free Press, November 19, 1993