Identity and Awareness
Mentoring and Support
Spirituality and Religion
Spokane in Perspective
There were guys that were so sick that people would check on them twice a day: bring them meals and check on them. No medication, because they were so weak and so sick that they were just on the downhill slide. There were organizations within our community [caring for AIDS patients. For example,] they’d hand out condoms to various bars. That started in the gay community; now they are doing it in the straight community as well. [The message was,] “If you’re going to have sex, have safe sex.” I don’t think it was city-wide or a governmental thing at that time. It just was, we were taking care of ourselves and organizing within ourselves. I don’t think there was a name for [the organizations doing this]. I just know that some of our friends helped, and some of our friends needed help.[There were also fundraisers for AIDS treatment.] All of us would go—women, men—all of us would go. Some of our very dearest, dearest friends are gay men. Being women, and being nurturing as much as gay men are, we rallied around them and helped support them.
Source: Interview with Maureen Nickerson in December 2006, held at the Northwest Museum for Arts and Culture.