As dusk approached hundreds of San Francisco city elected officials, family, friends, co-workers and citizen's from every walk of life gathered at the steps of City Hall to pay tribute to the lives of beloved Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone killed 34 years ago on "that day, that brutal, brutal day."
The event, co-organized by the Harvey Milk Foundation, SF Gay Men's Chorus and the progressive Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club, amassed SF's political powerhouses to pay homage to the fallen political icons. Anne Kronenberg, President of the Milk foundation, head of SF Dept. of Emergency Management and Harvey's campaign manager, kicked things off thanking everyone for coming and then emceed for the remainder of the evening.
SF Mayor, Ed Lee, remarking, "the doors opened by the hard work of both these inspired men made it possible for him to become the City's first Asian American mayor."
Former Mayor Willie Brown, SF's first African American mayor and longest serving California Speaker of the House, served up a heartfelt recount of his time with Mayor Moscone whom he termed, "as close to being his brother as his real brother."
Tom Ammiano, friend and activist partner of Harvey's, former SF Supervisor and current Assemblyman, managed to infuse the night with a bit of humor remembering how Harvey loved a good laugh and joked how hot he found Sup. Scott Weiner who holds Harvey's former district Supervisor seat
Jonathan Moscone, the mayor's youngest son, gave the sweetest and most touching speech and asked those gathered to, "celebrate his father as he lived not to dwell on how he died."
Sup. David Campos followed, making no bones that, "As a man who happens to be an immigrant, Latino, Queer he knew how the progressive, political work done by Harvey and George bridging multiple communities was tantamount to serving a diverse electorate in San Francisco then and now."
Stuart Milk, Harvey's nephew, creator of the foundation that bears his uncle's name, closed out the evening recounting how Harvey has inspired him to help other oppressed Queers around the world.
A potpourri of San Franciscan politicos were among those amassed to remember Milk and Moscone: Dennis Herrera, SF District Attorney, current and former Supes John Alvalos, Christina Olague, Eric Mar and Bevan Duffty, GLBT Historical Society President Paul Boneberg, the ubiquitous Donna Sachet, unofficial Castro ambassador & tireless fundraiser, Glenn Anna Conda Hyde, Pres. of Harvey Milk LGBT Dem. Club plus rank and file members of the National Lawyers Guild, Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, Faerie Community, ACT UP, Labor and Social Justice Activists from every community.
Post speeches the procession moved down Market Street holding candles led by a police escort. At Castro and Market the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club assembled a beautiful shrine in Harvey's honor and the crowd swelled significantly.
The Liberation Brass Band played New Orleans styled celebratory songs entertaining the crowd. Marchers took their pilgrimage at last down Castro Street ending the evening Harvey's former home/camera shop. It is now SF's first LGBT designated historic landmark and the Human Rights Campaign swag store.
Glendon Anna Conda Hyde closed out the night reminding people that the struggle for liberation and equality isn't over and we in SF continue to lead the fight for full equality.
(All photos unless otherwise denoted by Waiyde Palmer)
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