May 10, 1965 – March 4, 2020
A noted figure in Detroit’s electronic music scene, James Joseph Stone Jr. was born in Royal Oak and graduated from Seaholm High School in Birmingham in 1984. He attended Eastern Michigan University and came out as a young gay man on the dance floors of Todd’s and Heaven. A musician and DJ, Stone became an important distributor and promoter of house and techno throughout the metro area.
Potere-Modetz Funeral Home
The Advocate: Jim Stone, 1965-2020
June 17, 1935 – November 2, 1990
Richard Dutton grew up in Birmingham, graduated from high school in 1953, and served as a medic in the U.S. Army. Following his military service, he held retail jobs before starting bartending at Tiffany’s in the early 1970s. He later operated the Cove with Lin Shampine and Norm Schwartz and then worked for Menjo’s and staffed the door at the Pink Flamingo. At age 55, Dutton took his own life.
Cruise, November 14, 1990
March 19, 1929 – February 17, 2020
Detroit native Susan Reeder Breuer graduated from Birmingham High School, studied at Northwestern University, was married, raised three children, and earned her Ph.D. in psychology before divorcing in the late 1970s. At her 40th high school reunion, Breuer became reacquainted Nancy Kasperzak and the two became life partners, settling In Benzie County. Kasperzak survived her by four days.
Benzie County Record, March 18, 2020
October 3, 1928 – February 21, 2020
Benzonia resident and lifelong musician Nancy Pierce Kasperzak grew up in Metro Detroit and graduated from Birmingham High School. After divorcing and with her children grown, Kasperzak joined her childhood classmate Susan Reeder Breuer to forge a life partnership. They eventually settling on Crystal Lake in Benzie County and late, for a time had a horse farm. Breuer preceded her in death by four days.
Benzie County Record, March 4, 2020
July 20, 1930 – January 21, 2009
Marjorie Ann Lyda earned her MSW from Wayne State and in 1967 became the first African-American woman to open a psychotherapy practice in Birmingham. She was one of the earliest therapists in Metro Detroit to provide positive counseling to gay clients and offered pioneering treatment for people now termed transgender. Lyda also served as pastor for churches in Ferndale and Detroit.
Detroit News, January 28, 2009
November 14, 1975 – January 6, 2014
Christopher Neumann of Birmingham grew up in Grosse Pointe, attended Grosse Pointe High School, and attended the University of Michigan. He was vice president of the Detroit public relations firm Weber Shandwick. Nuemann and his life partner Todd Lloyd lost their lives in a single-engine plane crash.
Between The Lines, January 9, 2014
February 27, 1962 – January 6, 2014
Birmingham resident Todd Glenn Lloyd was born in Mount Pleasant and graduated from Clare High School. He owned and operated the rental company Chair Covers & Linens in Madison Heights. Lloyd and his partner of 10 years Christopher Neumann perished in a single-engine plane crash.
Between The Lines, January 9, 2014
March 26, 1949 – August 5, 2005
Onetime Birmingham resident Daniel Lee Stoepker was diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1986. He was a church elder active in Presbyterians for Gay and Lesbian Concerns and served on the board of directors for AIDS Partnership Michigan. Stoepker was preceded in death by his partner Brad Kosko and survived by his daughter and son. He died from AIDS-related complications at age 56.
Between The Lines, August 11, 2005
April 7, 1984 – June 23, 2015
Birmingham native Jessie Makaila Shipps was a decorated veteran the U.S. Air Force, serving from 2003 to 2014. She was active in SPARTA, an organization for trans military members, and produced a number of YouTube videos documenting her gender transition. Shipps and her spouse Leeanna resided in Hampton, Virginia with their daughter Grace.
The Advocate, June 24, 2015
Detroit News, July 5, 2015
March 10, 1962 – July 11, 2006
Douglas McIntosh earned a B.S. in architecture from the University of Michigan in 1984 and a Masters from Yale in 1990. Three years later, he co-founded McIntosh Poris Associates in Birmingham and soon became a central voice for historic preservation. McIntosh served as president of Preservation Wayne and, with his life partner Scotty James, restored the 1896 Julius Melchers home in Detroit’s West Village.
Between The Lines, July 20, 2006
Model D, July 29, 2015