Why We Fight. A Tribute to the HIV/AIDS Response

December 02, 2017

In honor of World AIDS Day 2017, I wanted to compile a post of photos that reflect some of the impactful moments I experienced in my work within the HIV/AIDS response in Africa. I remember the moment when I knew what my life's work would be about. It was a moment. A single introduction to a woman at the end of her life in Mathare North in 1999. She has stayed with me up to now. I still have her photo in my home up to today. I remember everything about our time together. Every detail.

Every person I know who works in this field connects back to a person. Today we honor those people: Many with us in spirit. Many more with us in LIFE. Every single person who has been touched directly or indirectly. Those who research, those who advocate, those who respond in powerful and often unseen ways; those who live in courageous vulnerability to empower others. Every single beautiful, unique, irreplaceable and precious life that connects back to a fight that is worth giving EVERYTHING to and for. I honor you today and everyday.

"Someday, the AIDS crisis will be over. Remember that. And when that day comes, when that day has come and gone, there’ll be people alive on this Earth, gay people and straight people, men and women, black and white, who will hear the story that once there was a terrible disease in this country and all over the world, and that a brave group of people stood up and fought and, in some cases, gave their lives, so that other people might live and be free. So I’m proud to be with my friends today and the people I love, because I think you’re all heroes, and I’m glad to be part of this fight..." 

Vito Russo
Why We Fight
1988

 


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