December 23, 1937 – July 4, 2014
The Venerable Anthony Turney, Archdeacon for the Arts at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral, died peacefully at Coming Home Hospice following a three-year battle with cancer. He was 76, and his death came on the 38th anniversary of his becoming a United States citizen.
Born in Sutton, England, openly gay Turney looked forward to moving to the United States, his adopted country. With the onset of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s, Turney’s life changed course again. In mid 1991, he quit his work to care for his partner, James Brumbaugh, who was dying from AIDS-related complications. It was a devastating loss.
In 1992, after completing Jimmy’s AIDS Memorial quilt panel, he asked, “What would you have me do now, God?” Within months, he moved permanently to San Francisco, was appointed CEO of the NAMES Project Foundation, and after only three years, would bring more than 42,000 panels of the Quilt to Washington, DC, for display on the National Mall. It was viewed by 1.2 million people.
Turney found his spiritual home at Grace Cathedral, where he served as parishioner, as Canon for Development, and then, through his vocational calling, as clergy. In addition to serving as Archdeacon for the Arts, he also served as Chaplain to the Dean’s Search Committee for Grace Cathedral.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Anthony’s memory may be made to one of the following: The Sacred Dying Foundation (www.sacreddying.org), The Rainbow Honor Walk (www.rainbowhonorwalk. org), the Ghiberti Foundation, the arts and culture foundation at Grace Cathedral (www.gracecathedral.org) or the San Francisco Opera Archive (www.sfopera.com).
A funeral and celebration of Anthony’s life will be held at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral (1100 California Street) on Monday, July 14, at 11am.
August 9, 1926 – June 30, 2014
Frank M. Robinson, a speechwriter for Harvey Milk who penned Milk’s memorable “You’ve Got to Have Hope” speech and other often-quoted Milk speeches, died Monday, June 30, in San Francisco. He was 87. Robinson, an out gay man, wrote for Milk’s campaign and has been credited for helping Milk to win his historic election to the SF Board of Supervisors in 1977.
Robinson was also a well-known science fiction and technothriller writer. Three of his many novels were made into Hollywood blockbusters: The Power, The Glass Inferno (which became The Towering Inferno) and The Gold Crew (retitled The Fifth Missile).
Robinson played himself in a cameo role in the 2008 movie Milk. Upon hearing of Robinson’s death, Milk screenwriter Dustin Lance Black said that Robinson “was like a father to me. To say the earth feels made of quicksand lately makes it sound too solid. Frank, I’ll miss your thunderous laughter, your protective love and your razor sharp writer’s mind.”
A memorial event is currently being planned.