There have been a number of sad losses for the LGBT community in 2015. Here are some of those who will be sadly missed for their great contribution to the community.

Jackie Collins

Author

19th September 2015

Jackie Collins lost her battle with stage 4 breast cancer on the 19th September. Her sister Joan Collins is said to be “devastated” by the loss. Jackie Collins had written 32 books in her lifetime and had included a gay character from the very beginning. She lost a very close childhood friend to suicide, Peter, who was gay. His suicide prompted her to say to Out Magazine,

“One day he committed suicide. And that made me think really deeply about the problems that some poor guys go through when they want to come out.

“I’ll never forget Peter,” she says. “He was so good-looking; he had curly hair, and he was tall and lovely. He just couldn’t come out, and then he killed himself. He must have been about 17, maybe.”

Charl van den Berg

Mr Gay World 2010
6th August 2015

The 33-year-old South African activist and model died after being diagnosed with lymphatic cancer. He was Mr Gay South Africa in 2009 and became Mr Gay World in 2010. With his win, Mr. Van den Berg said he wanted to,

“break down stereotypes and differing mindsets in the global community and promote oneness and equality for all people by bridging the gap between those mindsets.

“It is my understanding that people are people before we are different.”


Cilla Black

Singer, Performer, Entertainer
1st August 2015

Legendary performer and entertainer Cilla Black died after a fall, following a stroke at her Spanish home. Her musical career spawned two number hits, Anyone Who Had A Heart and You’re My World and a slew of top 10s including Aflie.


 

Beau Biden

Son of Vice President Joe Biden and Trans / Equality advocate
30th May 2015

The 46-year-old son of Joe Biden died from brain cancer. Beau Biden was the eldest son of Joe Biden. He was described as an “outspoken supporter of LGBT rights” by Advocate magazine. He had been battling brain cancer for several years.


 

Martin Fisher

Leading HIV Specialist
23rd April 2015

Martin Fisher was a leading HIV Specialist instrumental in field of HIV medicine and research over two decades. He was found by police at his home.


 

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Richard Glazter

Film Director
10th March 2015

The writer and co-director of Still Alice after a battle with ALS. His partner British born partner for 20 years issued the following statement:

‘I am devastated. Rich was my soul mate, my collaborator, my best friend and my life. Seeing him battle ALS for four years with such grace and courage inspired me and all who knew him.

In this dark time, I take some consolation in the fact that he got to see Still Alice go out into the world. He put his heart and soul into that film, and the fact that it touched so many people was a constant joy to him.


Sam Simon

Co creator of The Simpsons
8th March 2015

Sam Simon was instrumental in helping TheGayUK save Benjy the gay bull from slaughter. He was just 59 when he died from colon cancer. He was an animal lover and donated £5000 to our campaign to save Benjy.


Dirk Shafer

Former Playgirl Centrefold
5th March 2015

Shafer first came to public attention when he appeared at age 27 in a photo spread in Playgirl Magazines ‘Holiday 1990’ issue, and was chosen as their Man Of The Year in 1992. He documented all the process and pressures he was under from all sides to pose as straight into the 1995 movie he directed and starred in. He died on the 8th March 2015.


Albert Maysle

Director of Grey Gardens
5th March 2015

Albert died at the age of 88… Albert has continued to make films the latest of which is ‘Iris’ a profile of 93 year iconic fashion maven Iris Apfel which was profile in TheGayUK


 

Leslie Gore

It’s My Party singer
16th Feb 2015

Lesley Gore composed songs for the 1980 movie Fame for which she received an Academy Award Nomination, and she recorded her last album in 2005 entitled Ever Since. An out lesbian, who had been with her partner Lpis Sasson a jeweller designer for 33 years, Ms. Gore also hosted the PBS TV series In The Life which focused ion LGBT matters in 2004