August 15, 2947 – March 17, 2005
Kenneth John Arnold was born in Detroit and graduated in 1965 from Lincoln Park High School in Lincoln Park. He later moved to Bay City and in the early 1970s, he became proprietor of Chalet Interiors in Saginaw. Often known by his drag name Bambi, Arnold took over Tallulah’s Show Bar in the 1990s and rechristened it Bambi’s Bottoms Up.
Saginaw News, March 19, 2005
November 30, 1955 – January 19, 2005
William Arthur Popps was born in the small Upper Peninsula town of Ewen, graduated with the class of 1973 from Marquette Senior High School, and earned a degree in theater from Northern Michigan University. Popps was co-owner with Brian Thorsen of Club Xpress in Escanaba, the only gay bar in the UP, from 1992 to 2002.
Canale-Gwinn Funeral Home and Cremation Services
August 26, 1933 – September 19, 2005
Born in Chicago, Barbara Lee Christiansen graduated from Baldwin High School in Birmingham and earned her degree in dental hygiene from the University of Michigan. A resident of Huntington Woods, she was active with the local library, the garden club, the Detroit Zoo, and other causes. With her involvement with Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Christiansen was also a PFLAG mom.
Detroit News, September 21, 2005
October 27, 1961 – May 21, 2005
Known in Detroit’s gay community as Tommy K, Thomas Patrick Kyewski attended Hamtramck High School. At various local nightspots in the 1980s and ‘90s, he did go-go dancing and performed as Tina Wells, and held the distinction of winning both the Miss Gay Detroit and Mr. Gay Detroit competitions. Kyewski also won female impersonation titles at Gigi’s, the Gold Coast, Club Incognito, and Footlights.
Our Community Roots
June 3, 1947 – March 9, 2005
Born in Detroit, Brian Joseph Killian earned his B.A. at Ferris State and MBA at Wayne State. He taught at Grosse Pointe North High School before switching careers and becoming a celebrated interior designer. Killian donated generously to the Triangle Foundation and served as co-chair of the 1993 Human Rights Campaign Michigan Dinner gala fundraiser. A fire in his Birmingham home took his life.
Detroit Free Press, March 11, 2005
Between The Lines, March 17, 2005
May 2, 1940 – April 10, 2005
Royal Oak resident Sharon Lee Smith was born in Detroit and graduated of Redford High School in 1958. She was later employed as an office manager for many years. Smith enjoyed lesbian romance novels, the LPGA, the History Channel, and Jeapardy. Before a stroke forced her to live in a nursing home, she shared a home with her partner of 29 years Joyce.
Lesbian Connection September/October 2005
December 14, 1936 – August 9, 2005
Detroit native Harvi Alonzo Griffin was a world-renowned harpist, singer, and teacher. He graduated from Cass Tech High School and earned a B.A. and his M.A. from Michigan State University, served in the U.S. Army from 1962 to 1964, and pursued further studies at the Eastman School of Music. Griffin moved to Phoenix in the late 1980s and was survived by his partner of 13 years Lee Barr.
Arizona Republic, August 21, 2005
May 29, 1944 – April 6, 2005
Martha Charles of Lathrup Village was born in Crawfordsville, Indiana and as a toddle moved to Detroit, where she graduated with the class of 1962 from Cass Tech High School. After earning her B.A. from Western Michigan University, she taught middle and high school in St. Clair Shores. Charles was active in Women Together and co-founded the group Lesbian-A-Sisters. Her partner Sue Brooks survived her.
Between The Lines, May 12, 2005
January 22, 1943 – June 23, 2005
Erroll Wayne Hert took his mother’s name Vaunda for his stage name, wowing audiences as the renowned Vaunda Lee at Menjo’s, the Gold Coast, Triple XXX, and other Detroit bars in the 1970s and 1980s. He won the Camp Prize from the Performer Awards of Detroit in 1982. Hert resided in his hometown of Bedford, Indiana at the time of his death.
Our Community Roots
June 11, 1936 – May 4, 2005
Known as the “Worm Woman,” Kalamazoo resident Mary Arlene Appelhof became a world-renowned expert on using earthworms for composting. She was born in Detroit, grew up in Alma, and attended high school in Ohio. She earned a B.S. and two Masters from Michigan State and taught in Kalamazoo and at Interlochen. Appelhof was survived by her partner of 27 years Mary Frances Fenton.
Kalamazoo Gazette, May 5, 2005
Between The Lines, May, 19, 2005
Lesbian Connection, September/October 2006