LeRoy Scott

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June 2, 1917 – March 23, 2009

LeRoy Raymond Scott was born in Detroit, graduated from Cass Tech, and attended Wayne State.  For three decades he resided in New York, where his drag persona Madame X was photographed by Diane Arbus.  After returning to Michigan, he became active in Unlimited Seniors and Black and White Men Together.  Metro Detroit’s LGBT community honored Scott with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.

Between The Lines, March 26, 2009

Jennifer Holiday Chanel

Jennifer Holiday Chanel pic

June 9, 1969 – November 15, 2020

An early member of the House of Chanel, Jennifer Holiday Chanel graduated with the class of 1987 from Flint Central High School and went on to attend Eastern Michigan University.  She performed at the Nectarine in Ann Arbor, later worked at Gigi’s in Detroit, and won the Miss Gigi’s title in 1997.  The Performers Awards of Detroit honored Chanel with its Bookie Stewart Hall of Fame Award in 2017.

Between The Lines [online only], November 19, 2020

Thomas Kyewski

Tommy Kyewski pic

October 27, 1961 – May 21, 2005

Known in Detroit’s gay community as Tommy K, Thomas Patrick Kyewski attended Hamtramck High School.  At various local nightspots in the 1980s and ‘90s, he did go-go dancing and performed as Tina Wells, and held the distinction of winning both the Miss Gay Detroit and Mr. Gay Detroit competitions.  Kyewski also won female impersonation titles at Gigi’s, the Gold Coast, Club Incognito, and Footlights.

Our Community Roots

Darin Huff

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November 21, 1967 – October 10, 1994

Born in Lincoln Park, Darin Travis Huff graduated with the class of 1986 from John F. Kennedy High School in Taylor and performed with the Taylor Ballet Company.  Huff came out at age 16 and for many years worked as a go-go dancer at the Gold Coast, was active in the Performer’s Awards of Detroit, and was also a Mr. Gas Station titleholder.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 26.

No known obituary

Tony Brown

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February 15, 1958 – February 20, 2015

Antony Eugene “Tony” Brown of Madison Heights was born in England and graduated from Dondero High School in Royal Oak.  He later studied voice at Michigan State University and in the early 1980s was a noted singer at Detroit gay bars.  Brown served on the board of the Performers Awards of Detroit and received multiple PAD honors, including best go-go boy and Male Entertainer of the Year.

No known obituary

James Brown II

James Brown II pic

August 2, 1960 – February 11, 2019

James Osmond Brown II, known to customers and leather community members as Diamond Jim, grew up in Highland Park and graduated from Detroit’s Cass Tech High School.  Over the years, he held such titles as Mr. R&R, Mr. Leather Detroit, and Mr. Michigan Leather and in 1994 helped form the Michigan International Gay Rodeo Association.  From 2001 to 2010, Brown operated Diamond Jim’s Saloon.

Between The Lines, March 7, 2019

Dennis Duvall

Dennis Duvall pic

March 8, 1961 – August 31, 1992

Dennis Wayne Duvall was born in Monroe, earned a B.S. in Arts Management from Eastern Michigan University, and worked as a manager for Frames Unlimited.  In the persona of Lisa Carlisle, Duvall performed at the Rubaiyat and Nectarine Ballroom in Ann Arbor and at such bars as Backstreet, the Deck, Gigi’s, and the Pink Flamingo in Detroit.  Duvall won the Miss Gay Ann Arbor title for 1985-86.

Cruise, September 9, 1992

Michigan Tribune, September 1992

Larry Kunkle

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September 24, 1964 – March 10, 2002

Ferndale resident Lawrence James Kunkle, better known as Larry, was born in Cleveland, Ohio and graduated in 1973 from Warren High School.  He earned his Bachelor’s in advertising from Ferris State University in 1987 and worked in advertising, journalism, and computer tech.  Kunkle was active in WAGS, Wonderful Animals Giving Support, and was named Mr. Detroit Eagle 2002.

Between The Lines, April 11, 2002

Robert Brunner

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July 14, 1955 – June 11, 1999

For more than 25 years, Robert Brunner performed female impersonation in Detroit under the name Melba Moore, winning the Miss Gay Continental U.S.A. title for 1981-82 and honored for Lifetime Achievement by the Performers Awards of Detroit in 1999.

Cruise, June 16, 1999

Between The Lines, June 24, 1999

Melba Moore Tribute at Our Community Roots