Farewell Ken Jones, the LGBTQ activist, dies after a battle with cancer
After many hard-won battles,veteran LGBTQ activist Ken Jones lost the battle against bladder cancer at age 70.
The San Francisco LGBTQ community is mourning the death of Ken Jones. The activist will be remembered for fighting in the Vietnam War, for his consistent and powerful activism on behalf of the LGBTQ community, and for his work at the San Francisco AIDS Foundation.
Jones was one of the first defenders of real diversity within the LGBTQ community and its organizations. He was the first African-American president of the board of the San Francisco LGBT Pride Celebration Committee and was a part of the organization until 1980.
He fought against HIV for a long time, and spent "a DECADE preparing to die with dignity," even though it was not the disease that would defeat him. Years later, he was ordered a religious deacon and celebrated love by performing weddings.
Jones was one of the country's most important activists for the LGTBQ community and many important figures are grieving his loss. Among them, California Senator Scott Weiner, Cleve Jones and Dustin Lance Black, who directed the show that would put Jones in the spotlight during the last years of his life.
Rest in power KEN JONES. His was one of the three proud histories shared in #WhenWeRise. An ordained deacon, a dedicated HIV/AIDS activist, he worked hard to desegregate the LGBTQ movement. I will never forget his smile, kindness, and inextinguishable passion for fairness. pic.twitter.com/kgyFo9saWA
— Dustin Lance Black (@DLanceBlack) January 14, 2021
In 2017, Jones' life was brought to television in the show, When We Rise, recounting his work as an LGBTQ activist in the 70s and 80s. It's a legacy we will all remember and appreciate.
Rest in Power, Ken Jones.