Silver Lee Garske

Silver Lee Garske pic

June 19, 1933 – August 3, 2017

Silver Lee Garske, a Kalamazoo native and resident of the village of Mattawan, played fast pitch softball.  She earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s in education from Western Michigan University and went on to teach gym for 33 years, retiring from the Harper Creek Community Schools in 1987.  Garske was preceded in death by her life companion of 65 years Betty Clark.

Kalamazoo Gazette, August 6, 2017

Patricia Eames

Patricia Eames pic

December 25, 1929 – February 7, 2017

Lawyer, professor, and labor activist Patricia Eames earned her BA. at Reed College, her M.A. from Columbia, and her J.D. from Yale Law School.  In the 1980s, she served as general counsel for Wayne State University.  While in Detroit she and her life partner Connie Hart were active with the Forum Foundation and SEMGLA, the South East Michigan Gay/Lesbian Association.

Reed Magazine, 2017

Sandra Cole

Sandra Cole pic

September 17, 1937 – May 15, 2017

Noted sexologist Sandra Cole founded the Comprehensive Gender Identity Program at the University of Michigan in 1993 and served as its director until retiring in 2000.  She was also a longtime advocate for transgender legal and civil rights, and helped secure gender identity as a protected category in the UM bylaws and Ann Arbor’s human rights ordinance.

Ann Arbor News, June 23, 2017

Sandra S. Cole papers at the Bentley Historical Library

Phyllis Erb

Phyllis Erb pic

January 19, 1932 – December 14, 2017

Grayling resident Phyllis Ann Erb worked for 24 years as a wound specialist with the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor.  She met her life partner Patricia Teal in the mid-1960s when both were heterosexually-married housewives and mothers.  Erb and Teal operated the Heritage House Bed and Breakfast in Gaylord from 1991 to 1996.

Ann Arbor News, December 24, 2017

Angela Romagnoli

Angela Romagnoli pic

October 19, 1949 – July 5, 2017

Born in Allegheny, Virginia, Angela Romagnoli grew up within a union family in Dearborn and retained a passion for social justice her whole life.  At the University of Michigan she took part in the Students for a Democratic Society in the late 1960s and helped found the campus Radicalesbians in 1970.

San Francisco Chronicle, August 13, 2017

Radical Lesbian Foremothers