Jill Ramseyer

Jill Ramseyer pic

September 19, 1934 – August 4, 1992

Born in Bay City, Jill Marilyn (Conway) Ramseyer graduated from the Henry Ford Hospital nursing program in 1955 and began work as an RN for the Genesee County Public Health Department in 1972.  The first nurse in Flint to do HIV testing, she was founder and later president of Wellness HIV/AIDS Services.  Ramseyer retired to Au Gres in 1991 and was survived by her husband and two children.

Flint Journal, August 5, 1992

Randy Pope

Randy Pope pic

March 30, 1944 – December 4, 2018

Randall Steven “Randy” Pope grew up in Battle Creek and earned his B.S. from the University of Michigan.  He worked for the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta before returning to Michigan.  During his 40-year career in public health, Pope was at the forefront of steering state governmental response to the HIV/AIDS crisis.  Pope was preceded in death by his wife and survived by two sons and two stepsons.

Lansing State Journal, December 11, 2018

Cynthia Wrentmore

Cynthia Wrentmore pic

December 5, 1934 – October 28, 2001

A native of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, Cynthia Jane (Young) Wrentmore started as a public health nurse with the Washtenaw County Department of Public Health in 1958 and became as its communicable disease coordinator in 1981.  She served on the board for Wellness Networks/Huron Valley, later known as the HIV/AIDS Resource Center, and was a pioneering AIDS educator in the Ann Arbor area.

Between The Lines, November 29, 2001

Brent Lewis

September 30, 1965 – May 27, 2003

Detroit native and Pershing High grad Brent O’Neal Lewis earned his B.A. from Wayne State University.  He was an early participant in Men of Color and volunteered on the promotions committee for Hotter Than July.  Lewis also helped launch HIV meal outreach through Full Truth Fellowship Church and visited hospitalized PWAs through the group Oliver Branch.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 37.

Between The Lines, June 19, 2003

Stephen Gendin

Stephen Gendin pic

February 20, 1966 – July 19, 2000

Stephen Gendin was a teenage member of Mensa and valedictorian of the Ypsilanti High School class of 1984.  While studying at Brown University, he learned he had HIV.  Gerdin went on to become a leading activist in ACT UP/New York, a columnist for POZ magazine, and the founder of Community Prescription Service, a mail-order pharmacy distributor.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 34.

New York Times, July 22,2000

Remembering Stephen Gendin on YouTube

Stephen Gendin Papers at Yale University

Schawne Parker

Schawne Parker pic 2

January 7, 1967 – June 26, 2004

Schawne Anthony Parker grew up in Detroit, graduated from Chadsey High School in 1985, and attended General Motors Institute before completing his B.S. in chemistry at Michigan State University.  He served as first president of Men of Color Motivational Group and was later executive director of the HIV/AIDS agency Center Health Outreach Workers.  Parker was survived by his longtime partner Marius Padieu.

Between The Lines, July 8, 2004

Floyd Dunn

Floyd Dunn pic

March 5, 1951 – April 17, 1996

Native Detroiter Floyd Dunn was a playwright, civil rights activist, and leader in the 1980s of the Detroit Coalition of Black Lesbians and Gays.  Dunn later served as the founding director of the Black AIDS non-profit organization Project Survival and advocated for the inclusion of men and women of color in clinical trials.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 45.

No known obituary

Charles Jewell

Charles Jewell pic

February 13, 1963 – January 10, 1995

Port Huron native and lifelong resident Charles James Jewell graduated with the class of 1981 from Port Huron High School and worked as a computer operator for a local bank.  Confronted few resources in St. Clair County for people with HIV, Jewell founded HIV/AIDS Support Services in 1993.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 31.

Cruise, January 18, 1995

Veronica Mitchell

Veronica Mitchell pic

January 9, 1956 – March 1, 2003

Detroit native Veronica Perryman Mitchell attended Mumford High School.  In a 1995 Detroit Free Press feature, she revealed how HIV helped her turn from a life of addiction.  Among her achievements, Mitchell served as AIDS ombudsperson for the City of Detroit, began a women with AIDS support group in C-HAG, and sat on the board of Men of Color.  She died from AIDS-related complications at age 47.

Detroit Free Press, March 6, 2003

Between The Lines, March 13, 2003

Kathryn Wright

Kathryn Wright pic

April 15, 1949 – April 26, 2010

A board member of Affirmations in the early 1990s, Kathryn Leta Wright of Lathrup Village earned her D.O. from the Michigan State University School of Osteopathic Medicine.  In her position with the Children’s Hospital of Michigan, she founded the Horizons Project in 1994 targeting the needs of HIV-positive and at-risk youth.  Wright was survived by her life partner Susan Brooks and daughter Jordan.

Between The Lines, May 6, 2010