William Townsend

William Townsend pic

July 18, 1952 – July 17, 1993

Eastpointe resident William Daryl Townsend was founding president of Friends Alliance for people with HIV, served on the board of Wellness Networks, and co-founded the Detroit chapter of ACT UP.  His appearance on WDIV’s Sonya Friedman Show was canceled in 1985 because the camera crew feared AIDS contagion.  He died of AIDS-related complications at age 40.

Cruise, July 28, 1993

Richard Villaire

Richard Villaire pic

May 8, 1948 – January 19, 1995

Ferndale resident and pioneering AIDS activist Richard William Villaire was born in Wyandotte and attended Roseville High School and Ferris State University before earning his B.A. in psychology at Eastern Michigan University.  He was an officer of the Michigan Organization for Human Rights and was a founder of Wellness Networks, Friends Alliance, and the Midwest AIDS Prevention Project.

Between The Lines, February 1995

Metra, February 15, 1995

Between The Lines, March 1995

Tim Warner

Tim Warner pic

September 18, 1955 – September 25, 1993

Born in Jackson, Timothy Gerald Warner shared a home in Ferndale with his life companion David Wyka and worked for Consumers Power.  Warner served as president of the Ferndale Chamber of Commerce, sat on the city’s Beautification Commission, and volunteered with Wellness Networks.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 38.

Royal Oak Tribune, September 27, 1993

Tom Bartley

November 19, 1947 – January 10, 1990

Utica resident Thomas Michael Bartley grew up in Port Huron, earned his B.S. in nursing in Houston and a Master’s in nursing from Mercy College in Detroit.  He sang in the choir at Zion Lutheran Church in Ferndale and was involved in both Wellness Networks and AIDS Interfaith Network.  Bartley was survived by two children and his lover Jim Proffitt.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 42.

Detroit Free Press, January 11, 1990

Chester Cislo

Chester Cislo pic

July 13, 1945 – September 5, 1994

Chester Cislo attended St. Casimir High School on Detroit’s West Side and worked as a sexton at St. James Catholic Church in Ferndale.  Cislo represented the Detroit Together Men’s Chorus on the Detroit Area Gay/Lesbian Council, was active with Wellness Networks and the NAMES Project, and served on the board for Friends Alliance.  He died from AIDS-related complications at age 49.

Cruise, September 28, 1994

Deon Jackson

Deon Jackson pic 2

March 2, 1979 – April 11, 2018

Flint native Deuntia “Deon” Jackson earned his mortuary science degree from Gupton Jones College in Atlanta and worked as a mortician in Michigan and several other states.  He performed as DJ Envi, helped establish the Safe Space drop-in center for LGBTQ youth at Wellness Services and in 2011 co-founded the Flint Gay Pride celebration.  Jackson was survived by his husband Casio Flood.

Sheldon T. Banks Funeral Chapel