July 1, 1954 – August 28, 1996
Born in Middleville in Barry County, Rexford Palmer moved to Detroit as a young adult to work in retail. He continued his retail career after relocating in the mid-1980s to San Francisco, where he became active in the San Francisco AIDS Foundation.
Bay Area Reporter, September 19, 1996
May 31, 1951 – September 4, 1996
Detroit native Joe Elias graduated from Notre Dame High School in Harper Woods in 1969 and received his B.A. in sociology from the University of Detroit-Mercy in 1973. He worked in personnel at Chrysler and later relocated to Chicago and San Francisco.
Cruise, September 18, 1996
March 13, 1947 – November 11, 1996
A Chicago native, Carol Srbeny moved to Interlochen when she was 25, earned a second Bachelor’s degree, and worked as a self-employed counselor. An animal lover and wildlife enthusiast, she was active in the Grand Traverse area chapter of Dignity and Friends North.
Traverse City Record-Eagle, November 13, 1996
Friends North newsletter, January-February 1997
November 26, 1924 – October 4, 1996
Born in Traverse City, Alma Routsong served in the WAVES during World War II and graduated from Michigan State University. After moving to New York City, she authored the pioneering novel Patience and Sarah under the pen name Isabel Miller.
Gay Community News, Winter 1996
Lesbian Herstory Archives oral history of Alma Routsong
January 8, 1901 – January 10, 1996
A native of Otsego, Forman Brown attended the University of Michigan in the early 1920s and, with cousin Harry Burnett and companion Roddy Brandon, formed the famed Yale Puppeteers. In his eighties, Brown revealed that he was the author of the 1933 gay novel Better Angel written under the penname Richard Meeker.
Los Angeles Times, January 12, 1996
Bay Area Reporter, January 18, 1996
Forman Brown scrapbook at the Bentley Historical Library
July 10, 1956 – August 2, 1996
Raised in foster homes, Thesoloniki Richard “T.J.” Anthony entered politics as a campaign aide to U.S. Senator Donald Riegle. He was a 26-year-old divorced father of two when hired in early 1983 as executive director of the Michigan Organization for Human Rights, a position he held for just one year. After moving to San Francisco, he worked as an aide for two city supervisors.
Bay Area Reporter, August 8, 1996
T.J. Anthony papers at the San Francisco Public Library
January 9, 1949 – February 19, 1996
Known as the Godfather of House, legendary DJ Ken Collier spun music around Detroit for more than 30 years at such gay clubs as Bookie’s Club 870, Heaven, Todd’s, the Chessmate, and L’uomo. His skill with the turntable inspired a new generation of DJs and helped put Detroit’s dance scene on the global musical map.
Metra, February 28, 1996
MetroTimes, May 15-21, 1996