Transgender activist Cheryl Courtney-Evans dies
Pioneering Atlanta transgender activist Cheryl Courtney-Evans died on Oct. 2 after battling cancer and other health issues.
News of Courtney-Evans’ death led to an outpouring of online tributes across the country, and her passing comes on the heels of the deaths of two other Georgia LGBT luminaries—Atlanta drag icon Diamond Lil in August and Savannah drag legend Lady Chablis last month.
Courtney-Evans was the co-founder and executive director of Transgender Individuals Living Their Truth (TILTT) and often shared her thoughts on trans issues on her blog, A Bitch For Justice. Courtney-Evans was also recently named one of the 12 grand marshals for the Oct. 9 Atlanta Pride parade. She was honored both at the Oct. 8 Trans March and at the Pride parade the following day.
If there was a trans issue in Atlanta, Courtney-Evans was usually at the center of it, whether it be a now former Georgia ACLU leader’s stance on bathrooms and gender identity, trans voter disenfranchisement, trans inclusion at Atlanta Pride and Atlanta Black Gay Pride, attacks on trans and gender nonconforming people on MARTA and in Little Five Points, violence against trans women of color, passage of the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and the CDC’s handling of rising HIV rates among gay men and trans women.
Courtney-Evans’ final Facebook post was a shared photo of African-American abolitionist Frederick Douglass with his quote, “A slave is someone who sits down and waits for someone to free them.”
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