Rexford Palmer

Rexford Palmer pic

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

Vielka Holness

Vielka Holness pic

August 27, 1965 – June 4, 2015

A graduate of Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx, Vielka Holness received her B.A. from New York University.  She studied law at the University of Michigan Law School, clerked with the Michigan Court of Appeals, earned a Masters from Columbia, and received certification from Harvard’s Management Development Program in Higher Ed.  She capped an esteemed career serving as director for Post-Graduate Opportunities and the Pre-Law Institute of John Jay College.

Journal News, June 6, 2015

Bill Beetham

Bill Beetham pic

January 8, 1949 – July 24, 2017

Onetime Windsor resident and Chrysler employee, Garnet “Bill” Beetham was owner of the Male Box in Detroit and Male Box II in Warren.  He supported the Metro Detroit Softball League and numerous other gay causes in the Metro Area.

OutPost, August 2017

Kaul Funeral Home Dignity Memorial

Joe Elias

Joe Elias pic

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

Annette Berkobien

Annette Berkobien pic

December 9, 1972 – March 31, 2006

Born in Saginaw, Annette Berkobien graduated from Michigan State University in 1996 with a B.A. with a degree in interdisciplinary studies.  A poet, artist, and playwright, she worked for women’s shelters in Detroit and Lansing before moving to Oakland, California to attend the New College of California.

Lesbian Connection, July/August 2006

Stennis Ousley

Stennis Ousley pic

November 4, 1914 – January 18, 1991

Pianist Stennis Ousley accompanied Bramwell “ChiChi” Franklin at the Golden Slipper and other venues in the 1950s.  She performed solo at various straight and gay bars into the 1980s, including the Willis Show Bar, the Tryst Club, and the Deck.

No known obituary.