08-26-1904 – 01-04-1986 Christopher Isherwood – Born in Wyberslegh Hall, High Lane, Cheshire, England. He was an English novelist who embraced his attraction to men at an early age. While in Berlin in the 1930s he wrote the novel Mr. Noris Changes Trains (1935) and a short novel called Goodbye to Berlin (1939). The two are often published together in a collection called The Berlin Stories. These stories provided the inspiration for the play I Am a Camera (1951), the 1955 film, I Am a Camera (both starring Julie Harris), the Broadway musical Cabaret (1966), and the film (1972) of the same name. Isherwood collaborated on three plays with W.H. Auden. In 1946 Isherwood became an American citizen. On Valentine’s Day 1953, at the age of 48, he met teenager Don Bachardy. Despite the age difference, this meeting began a relationship, though interrupted by affairs and separations, would continue until the end of Isherwood’s life. The couple lived in Santa Monica, California. Considered Isherwood’s finest achievement was his 1964 novel A Single Man, that depicted a day in the life of George, a middle-aged, gay Englishman who is a professor at a Los Angeles university. The novel was made into a film of the same name in 2009, directed by Tom Ford and starring Colin Firth and Julianne Moore.
08-26-1945 – 06-11-2017 Jim Graham – Born in Wishaw, Scotland, UK. He was a Scottish-born American politician and a former member of the Council of the District of Columbia. He was a Democrat who represented Ward 1 in Washington, D.C. from 1998-2014. He is the second openly gay elected official in D.C., after David Catania. Graham became a naturalized American citizen. In October 1979, Graham joined Whitman-Walker Clinic’s board. He helped the clinic survive its initial funding crises. Within three years, he became the executive director, leading the clinic’s response to AIDS for 15 years (1984-1999). Under his leadership, the clinic became a leading HIV/AIDS institution. In 1984, Graham undertook the legal aid counseling of those with AIDS. In an oral history for the Rainbow History Project, Graham commented, “We’ve had one of the greatest epidemics of all time and this was the history, the history of the community banding together and helping itself. It was a phenomenal story. “ He says of the time: ”It was the most difficult period I’ve ever been through, there’s no question.”
08-26-1952 – 03-30-2003 Michael Jeter – Born in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee. He was an American character actor. His television roles included Herman Stiles on the sitcom Evening Shade (1990-1994) and Mr. Noodle’s brother, Mister Noodle on the Elmo’s World segments of Sesame Street (2000-2003). Jeter’s film roles include Zeig, Tango & Cash, The Fisher King, Sister Act 2, Waterworld, Air bud, The Green Mile, The Polar Express, and many others. In 1990, Jeter won a Tony Award for his performance in the Broadway musical Grand Hotel. He won an Emmy Award in 1992 for his role in the tv sitcom Evening Shade. His last two appearances were in the films Open Range and The Polar Express. Both films were in post-production at the time of his death, and , when released, contained a dedication to his memory. Jeter was openly gay. He had been with his life-partner, Sean Blue since 1995.