Carl Rippberger

Carl Rippberger pic

October 8, 1947 – May 16, 1994

Born in Detroit, Carl Rippberger graduated from Denby High School and served a tour of duty in Vietnam as a U.S. Army draftee.  He bar tended at Tiffany’s before acquiring the Escape Lounge, which he opened as Backstreet nightclub in 1979.  Rippberger served as president of the Detroit Bar Guild and helped raise funds for Wellness House and Affirmations.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 46.

Detroit Free Press, May 19, 1994

Cruise, May 25, 1994

Anthony Caputo

Anthony Caputo pic

December 26, 1943 – May 12, 1995

Born in Detroit, hairdresser Anthony Caputo attended the Virginia Farrell Beauty School and landed a job at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York at age 20.  He returned to Michigan in the early 1980s and later learned he was HIV-positive.  Caputo went on to help found AIDS Walk Detroit and work as volunteer coordinator for Wellness House.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 51.

Detroit Free Press, May 18, 1995