Karen Hartwig

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March 4, 1963 – March 18, 2011

Lansing resident Karen “Twig” Hartwig graduated from East Lansing High School, attended Lansing Community College, and earned a B.A. from Michigan State University.  Employed by Sparrow Hospital and later Sam’s Club, she served on the boards of Suits in the City and Michigan Pride.

Lansing State Journal, March 22, 2011

City Pulse, March 30-April 5, 2011

Lesbian Connection, July/August 2011

Kristin Cookson

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August 2, 1943 – February 13, 2017

Port Huron native Kristin Cookson attended Jackson High School and earned her B.S. in veterinary medicine from Michigan State University in 1965 and the degree of Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from MSU in 1967.  She and her wife Suzanne Marie Lohrberg were together 49 years.

Kalamazoo Gazette, February 19, 2017

Alma Routsong

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November 26, 1924 – October 4, 1996

Born in Traverse City, Alma Routsong served in the WAVES during World War II and graduated from Michigan State University.  After moving to New York City, she authored the pioneering novel Patience and Sarah under the pen name Isabel Miller.

Gay Community News, Winter 1996

Lesbian Herstory Archives oral history of Alma Routsong

Isabel Miller papers at Smith College

Jeffrey Montgomery

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May 9, 1953 – July 18, 2016

Jeffrey Montgomery graduated from Grosse Pointe South High School and earned his B.A. from Michigan State University.  Montgomery was active in the effort to restore Orchestra Hall in Detroit in the 1980s before helping to found in 1991 the Triangle Foundation.  As Triangle’s executive director, he battled hate crimes and championed sexual freedom and LGBTQ rights.

Detroit Free Press, July 19, 2016

Between The Lines, July 28, 2016

Trailer for America You Kill Me

Jay Manning

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November 23, 1948 – September 29, 1994

Artist Jay Manning designed the Christopher Street Detroit ’72 pride celebration logo, which showed a butterfly with sweeping wings and a clenched fist for a body.  The image also graced the window of the Green Carnation, the city’s first gay community center.  Manning died from AIDS-related complications at age 45.

Bay Area Reporter, October 10, 1994

Bill Beachler

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December 4, 1945 – January 11, 2016

A founder in 1979 of the Lansing Association for Human Rights, William Beachler later helped establish the Pride Scholarship for LGBT students at his alma mater Michigan State University.

Between The Lines, January 21, 2016

Remembering William Beachler

Bill Beachler papers at Michigan State University

Mary Beth Dietz

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April 1, 1967 – March 18, 2016

Mary Beth Dietz earned a B.A. in English from Michigan State University and taught English in Wisconsin before returning to school to become a chiropractor.  She and LeAnne Ray became the first same-sex couple married in Michigan City, Indiana.

Grosse Pointe News, March 24, 2016