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Sun Dec 2, 2012, 03:23 AM

 

LIFE Behind the Picture: The Photo That Changed the Face of AIDS



In November 1990 LIFE magazine published a photograph of a young man named David Kirby... The haunting image of Kirby on his death bed, taken by a journalism student named Therese Frare, quickly became the one photograph most powerfully identified with the HIV/AIDS epidemic...

David Kirby was born and raised in a small town in Ohio. A gay activist in the 1980s, he learned in the late Eighties — while he was living in California and estranged from his family — that he had contracted HIV. He got in touch with his parents and asked if he could come home; he wanted, he said, to die with his family around him. The Kirbys welcomed their son back...

“Early on,” Frare says of her time at Pater Noster House, “I asked David if he minded me taking pictures, and he said, ‘That’s fine, as long as it’s not for personal profit.’ To this day I don’t take any money for the picture. But David was an activist, and he wanted to get the word out there about how devastating AIDS was to families and communities. Honestly, I think he was a lot more in tune with how important these photos might become...”

As Peta’s (a volunteer at Pater Noster House, not David's lover) health deteriorated in early 1992 — as his HIV-positive status transitioned to AIDS — the Kirbys began to care for him, in much the same way that Peta had cared for their son in the final months of his life. Peta had comforted David; spoken to him; held him; tried to relieve his pain and loneliness through simple human contact — and the Kirbys resolved to do the same for Peta, to be there for him as his strength and his vitality faded.

Kay Kirby told LIFE.com that she “made up my mind when David was dying and Peta was helping to care for him, that when Peta’s time came — and we all knew it would come — that we would care for him. There was never any question. We were going to take care of Peta. That was that.

Read more: http://life.time.com/history/behind-the-picture-the-photo-that-changed-the-face-of-aids/#ixzz2Dsg8C2gh

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Reply LIFE Behind the Picture: The Photo That Changed the Face of AIDS (Original post)
HiPointDem Dec 2012 OP
Warpy Dec 2012 #1
HiPointDem Dec 2012 #2
JustAnotherGen Dec 2012 #4
HiPointDem Dec 2012 #5
JustAnotherGen Dec 2012 #6
HiPointDem Dec 2012 #9
Are_grits_groceries Dec 2012 #3
Snotcicles Dec 2012 #7
Odin2005 Dec 2012 #8

Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 03:42 AM

1. By 1990, Reagan was long gone, heterosexual cases and cases

among children, especially hemophiliacs, had finally pried the Fed's tight fist open since it was obvious the virus hadn't been quite as discriminating as that old bastard Reagan though ti was and research needed to be funded.

A lot of new drugs were fast tracked to patients we were used to seeing die within a day to a week and people were starting to live longer, long enough to get their affairs in order and say goodbye, mostly.

Most of the drugs we were giving in the late 80s were strings of numbers and letters and double blind studies were being done elsewhere. Dying people got the real thing.

We never knew how much time we'd buy them back then. It had just started to increase by 1990.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 03:46 AM

2. i posted the story because it touched me. i remember when the photo came out & the

 

bennetton controversy.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 07:51 AM

4. HiPoint

Can you give me a snapshot of the Benneton contro? Beautiful, sad picture btw.

Asking because I was born in 1973... I'm wondering if this is why my parents ramped up the clothing budget. My mom always bought my brother and me a few sweaters there for the winter as kids - mixed race family ... She liked their message. In high school - she started buying me a lot more from there.

My dad was and my mom still is always for the under dog.

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Response to HiPointDem (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 05:41 PM

6. thanks you!

I spoke with my mom this afternoon and she confirmed - that's why I got so much of it for Christmas that year.

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Response to JustAnotherGen (Reply #6)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 07:58 PM

9. interesting. nice mom.

 

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 05:30 AM

3. I lived in DC when the crisis began.

That was like having a front row seat to a horror show.
People in all levels of government ignored what was happening. There were the lonely few who tried. It was very sad and very scary.

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 05:54 PM

7. A photo that haunts me to this day is Kevin Cater's 1994 Pulitzer Prize winner. nt

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 06:45 PM

8. I remember first seeing that photo when I was a little kid.

I asked my mom "Why can't we help those people and make them all better?" and she said, because they haven't found a cure, yet.

That was in 1993, when I was 7. They still haven't found a cure, yet.

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