05-14-1921 – 08-08-1984 Richard Deacon – Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was an American television and film actor. His best-known roles are Mel Cooley on CBS’s The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961-1966) and Fred Rutherford on Leave it to Beaver (1957-1963). He co-starred as Tallulah Bankhead’s butler in a classic episode of The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour called The Celebrity Next Door. He was also in over 50 films. Deacon never said he was gay publicly. Bill Totten said that he was at a West Hollywood gay bar and saw Richard Deacon, Paul Lynde, and Nancy Walker. It was well known in the Hollywood community that Deacon was gay and he is listed in IMDb: Gay Actors Who Have Passed. Deacon was a gourmet chef. In the 1970s and 1980s, he wrote a series of cookbooks and hosted a Canadian television series on microwave cooking. He died from cardiovascular disease in 1984 at the age of 63.
05-14-1868 – 05-14-1935 Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld – Born in Kolobzeg, Poland. He was a German physician and sexologist. He was an outspoken advocate for sexual minorities. Hirschfeld founded the Scientific Humanitarian Committee, an organization that was the first advocacy for homosexual and transgender rights. Hirschfeld co-wrote and acted in the 1919 film Anders is die Andern (Different From Others), where Conrad Vaidt played one of the first homosexual characters ever written for cinema. The film had a specific gay rights law reform agenda. In 1904, he joined the Bund für Mutterschutz (League for the Protection of Mothers), the feminist organization founded by Helene Stöcker. He campaigned for decriminalization of abortion, and against policies that banned female teachers and civil servants from marrying or having children. When the Nazis took power, they attacked Hirschfeld’s Institute on May 6, 1933, and burned many of its books as well as its archives. By the time of the book burning, Hirschfeld had long left Germany for a speaking tour that took him around the world. He never returned to Germany. He established himself in exile in France. On his 67th birthday, Hirschfeld died of a heart attack in his apartment in Nice. American Henry Gerber, attached to the Allied Army of Occupation following WWI, became impressed by Hirschfeld and absorbed many of his ideas. Upon returning to the United States, Gerber was inspired to form the short-lived Chicago-based Society for Human Rights in 1924, the first known gay rights in the nation. In turn, a partner of one of the former members of the Society communicated the existence of the society to Los Angeles resident Harry Hay in 1929; Hay would go on to help establish the first long-term national homosexual rights organization in the United States, the Mattachine Society, in 1950.
05-14-1930 María Irene Fornés – Born in Havana, Cuba. She is a Cuban-American avant garde playwright and director and was a leading figure of the Off-Off-Broadway movement in the 1960s. Her themes focused on poverty and feminism, and on a personal level, her lesbian identity has been central to her art. Fornés became known in both Hispanic-American and experimental theatre in New York, winning a total of nine Obie Awards. She was also a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize with her play And What of the Night? (1990) She was lovers with Harriet Sohmers and Susan Sontag. Until she was stricken with Alzheimer’s disease in 2002, she continued to direct, teach, and mentor younger playwrights. Nilo Cruz studied with her.
05-14-1977 Sophie Anderton – Born in Bristol, United Kingdom. She is an English model and reality television personality. From 2004 until 2007, Anderton was a Patron of the original Action on Addiction in London, a charity and addiction research center investigation drug and alcohol dependence. She is openly bisexual.