Lesbian Activist Storme DeLarverie Who Threw The First Punch At Stonewall Passes Away At 93‏

Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, writer, blogger and owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Advocate, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, Raw Story, and The Huffington Post

2 Responses

  1. FACT CHECK: Taking nothing away from her actual accomplishments, I’ve yet to see one “witness” verify this. A 2010 “New York Times” interview reported, emphasis mine: emphasis mine: “SOME writers believe Ms. DeLarverie MAY have been the cross-dressing lesbian whose clubbing by the police was the catalyst for the riots (THE WOMAN HAS NEVER BEEN IDENTIFIED). While others are adamant that Ms. DeLarverie was NOT that woman ….” And demonstrated how the myth apparently got started by Storme herself; all the more painful for me to read having taken care of my late Mother who had Alzheimer’s: “At one point on Sunday, she said she was not struck by the police. At another moment, she said a police officer had hit her from behind.” David Carter, author of the best researched book on Stonewall, wrote that 13 years before the Times article she participated in a symposium about the riots at which she spoke “of escaping the police, not of being taken into custody by them, [saying] that on that night she was outside the bar, ‘quiet, I didn’t say a word to anybody, I was just there to see what was happening’, when a policeman, without provocation, hit her in the eye (‘Stonewall 1969: A Symposium’. June 20, 1997, New York City). DeLarverie is also an African-American woman, and all the witnesses interviewed by the author describe the woman [who some say inspired the crowd to fight back] as Caucasian. Stormé was well known in the local lesbian community at the time of the riots and has remained so ever since, and it is highly improbable that this woman who was seen by hundreds of people could have been a person of note in the community, else she would have been identified at the time or shortly thereafter.” May she rest in peace, and the myth be put to rest, too.

  1. May 30, 2014

    […] Will Kohl, Back2Stonewall Storme DeLarverie, proud lesbian activist, cross-dresser, and singer who had been reported by […]

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