Dr. Frank Kameny
October 11, 2011
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Earlier tonight, I learned of the passing of Dr. Frank Kameny. He was 86 and appeard vibrant.
Frank Kameny was more than a pioneer. He was definitely that. But he was also a trailblazer, a mentor, an inspiration — a hero. The list of platitudes to describe the father of the modern gay rights movement is endless . In 1957, Frank was fired as a federal government worker because he was gay. That was then.
I had the fortune of meeting Frank on several occasions, each surrounding our celebration of Capital Pride here in DC. He always had a warm glow about him. The sound of his voice, while not loud or boisterous, always commanded attention. Because one always wondered what gems would fall from his lips.
I think it’s quite fitting that Frank passed away on National Coming Out Day. He probably would have thought it appropriate. Next month, plans were being made to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Mattachine Society of Washington, the first gay rights organization in the nation’s capital, and one of the first in the nation. That organization was Frank’s brainchild.
We, as gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgendered all owe a debt of gratitude to the lifetime of work Frank has done on our behalf. May we now stand on his shoulders and continue the fight for equality.
Let’s make Frank proud!