A Woman for Her Time

In Memory of Stonewall Warrior Sylvia Rivera

Finding food, shelter, a safe bed, and even some recognition for genderqueer kids was a lifelong passion for Sylvia. She saw them as society's most vulnerable outcasts. She picketed and protested, caucused and cajoled, and if the occasion called for it, which it often did, she submitted to arrest.

Sylvia Rivera went out as she lived: struggling to get gender issues on the map. She was hooked up to monitors, IVs, and a morphine pump last Sunday when local gay leaders stopped by the intensive care unit to ask her advice. Mortally ill, she held back the night long enough to give them hell one last time for not being inclusive enough. She died only hours later, at just 50 years old: a unique lady for a unique time.

Funeral services for Sylvia Rivera will be held Tuesday, February 26, 7 p.m. at MCC Church 446 W. 36th St.

A memorial event for Sylvia Rivera is currently being planned. For information, e-mail j_vimo@hotmail.com.

Riki Wilchins is executive director of the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition (GenderPAC).

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