Monday, August 15, 2011

Brody's Notes... Chicago Lesbian Community Loses A Leader And Friend

Photo via The L Stop, Chicago, Illinois
By Brody Levesque | INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA -- The sudden fluke windstorm that collapsed the stage Saturday evening at the Indiana State Fair, in which five people were killed, and dozens of people — including several children — remained hospitalised Sunday, some with life-threatening injuries, has claimed the life of a 29 year old Chicago woman, Christina Santiago. Ms. Santiago was the programming manager for the Lesbian Community Care Project at Chicago's Howard Brown Health Center.
In a press statement released Sunday afternoon, Howard Brown President Jamal M. Edwards said:
"The sudden and devastating loss of Christina has left the entire community, including her Howard Brown Health Center family, heartbroken.
She has been a leading and driving force in the expansion of our women's health services division and a powerful advocate for all LGBT women," Edwards said.
In a report posted late Sunday by the Chicago based lesbian media outlet and blog, The L Stop:
Christina Santiago was amongst those killed in the Indiana State Fair accident. Before the band Sugarland was able to perform, strong winds knocked down the stage onto the crowd. Christina was amongst the 4 killed instantly. Her partner, Alisha Marie Brennon, a member of the Chicago Force, was also in the crowd and is currently in critical condition.
Ms. Santiago was a leading advocate for women's health issues via her position at the Brown Center's Lesbian Community Care Project.
The L Stop also wrote:
She was very determined to better our community and spread awareness of our community’s biggest issues. Most would catch Christina at festivals spreading the word about LCCP, Alisha at her side, greeting strangers and friends alike with her amazing smile that could light up a room. She was also on the Amigas Latinas board and would help with events and programming.
RELATED: Video of stage collapse at Indiana State Fair: