San Francisco – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued this statement following the passing of Jack Porter, a volunteer and organizer at San Francisco’s National AIDS Memorial Grove:
“My family and I are deeply saddened by the passing of our dear friend, Jack Porter. Jack and his late, beloved partner, Stephen Marcus, were instrumental in establishing the National AIDS Memorial Grove in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, and Jack spent many years dedicated to protecting and preserving this beautiful place of peace and remembrance as a longtime volunteer. It was a great privilege to author legislation in 1996 that designated the Grove as the only National Memorial dedicated to those who have been lost or touched by HIV/AIDS.
“Like so many of his generation, Jack had come out later in life and wanted a place for the LGBTQ community, friends and families to honor their loved ones who had died in the shadows. Jack’s tireless work and volunteerism helped transform a former swamp into sacred ground where the community can gather to remember those lost to HIV/AIDS. Thanks to the committed efforts of Jack and countless others, for over 25 years, the AIDS Memorial Grove has been a sanctuary to mourn as well as a public space to bring people together in the fight for LGBTQ rights, including marriage equality. My family and I have been honored to commemorate every milestone in my service in the Congress with Jack and many other friends at the Grove, pulling weeds and planting trees to help maintain the 10-acre National Memorial to ensure that it can continue to be a place of healing and hope for generations to come.
“May it be a comfort to Jack’s stepchildren Lucy and Cooper, daughter-in-law Angela, grandsons Myles and Remi and to all those whose lives were touched by Jack’s kindness that so many mourn with and pray for them at this sad time.”
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