March 3, 1945 – December 6, 1992
Native Detroiter Bruce Leonard Allen attended Lutheran West High School. He was a member of Tribe and a co-founder of Baccus and worked as a bartender at the R&R, the E-Ramp, and Ruby’s. Allen also performed as Tracy Daye, notably as a member of the house cast at Gigi’s, receiving the Performers Awards of Detroit Lifetime Achievement in 1992. He died from AIDS-related complications at age 47.
Cruise, December 16, 1992
October 9, 1945 – April 7, 2021
Nancy Jean Riblet of Plymouth graduated from the Ferris State University School of Business in 1968 and went on to a career that took her to the vice presidency at J. Walter Thompson USA, the advertising agency for Ford Motors. Riblet was survived by her partner of 24 years Evelyn Butler.
Detroit News, April 12, 2021
September 13, 1945 – November 26, 2019
William “Bill” Galligan Jr. grew up in a Chicago suburb and earned his Bachelor’s at Western Michigan University. Following a career as an educator, Galligan moved to Saugatuck, where he became a beloved retailer, operating the Old Post Office Shop and later Spice Crazy Cottage. He was active in efforts to enact a gay rights ordinance in the late 1990s and was also a strong supporter of local arts.
Commercial Record, December 5, 2019
May 8, 1945 – November 22, 1991
Queens, New York native Michael Jay “Mica” Kindman attended Michigan State University in the mid-1960s and edited East Lansing’s first alternative newspaper The Paper. Kindman later lived in Boston and San Francisco and became active in the Radical Faeries. His autobiography, My Odyssey through the Underground Press, was published posthumously. He died from AIDS-related complications at age 46.
Bay Area Reporter, December 5, 1991
June 23, 1945 – April 11, 2012
Longtime Wyandotte resident Susan Ann Christner graduated from Central High School in Flint in 1963 and earned her B.A. from the University of Michigan-Flint in 1976. She went on to get her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from UM in Ann Arbor in 1998 and went into private practice. She was survived by two sons and her partner Linda Sprankle.
Flint Journal, April 15, 2012
May 10, 1945 – January 1, 2002
Colorado native and longtime Saginaw resident John Michael Monahan worked as a rehabilitation therapist. During the 1980s, he became active in the Michigan Organization for Human Rights and in 1990 co-founded the Triangle Foundation and served as its president. Following a heart transplant in 1993, Monahan moved to Detroit to engage in activism full time.
Between The Lines, January 10, 2002
Saginaw News, January 16, 2002
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