Glide Pride: Randy Shilts’ Funeral

Trigger warning – photos in this section of the exhibit display hate speech.  The intent of sharing the photos is to educate individuals about some of the vile discrimination that was being amplified by other faith groups.  The historical context may be helpful for some, it may trigger others. 

Randy Shilts was a best-selling author and is thought to be the first openly gay reporter of a mainstream newspaper to write about the gay community.  Randy, who was sometimes a controversial figure in the LGBTQ community, is remembered for his books The Mayor of Castro Street: The Life and Times of Harvey Milk and And the Band Played On: Politics People and the AIDS Epidemic.


Book images courtesy of Megan Rohrer

After his death from AIDS, Randy’s funeral was held at Glide on February 22, 1994.

The memorial service of Randy Shilts is from the Glide Archive.  You can watch the full video here on YouTube.

Memorial bulletins courtesy of the  UC San Francisco, Library, Special Collections   – Dritz (Selma) Papers  – View a larger version of the memorial bulletin here.

Randy Shilts’ funeral was protested by the Westboro Baptist Church, a group known for repugnant signage and protesting the funerals of individuals who died of HIV/AIDS.  The photos below, from the Glide Archive, show some of the photos of the protesters and of the Rev. Cecil Williams addressing the crowd.

Courtesy of the Glide Archive

Courtesy of the Glide Archive

Courtesy of the Glide Archive

Courtesy of the Glide Archive

Courtesy of the Glide Archive

If this exhibit has inspired you to learn more about Glide Pride, you can connect here.

If this exhibit has inspired you to help support Glide Pride over the next 60 years you can make a donation here.