World Aids Day: And The Band Played On

 

Andthebandplayed_posterEvery year, around the world on December 1st we remember those who lost their lives to Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome or as we know it today AIDS.

Being in the entertainment industry, many beloved friends and family were stricken and left this earth way before their time due to complications from H.I.V or full-blown AIDS.  Yes…men, women, straight, gay, lesbian and yes…even some children were at some point infected with the virus.

So, feeling very passionate and desperately wanting to find a way to help, I leaped out of my comfort zone and ran a marathon to raise money for AIDS.  Yup…that’s right,  I completed 26.2 miles and ran over the finish line for the Honolulu Marathon raising over $5000 for Aids Project Los Angeles thanks to some very generous and supportive friends and constituents all over the world.

Back in the day, a film was released that very little people remember called “And The Band Played On”.  This film chronicles the evolution of developing the now famous “Aids Cocktail” and the politics that caused millions to succumb to this horrible disease while medical professionals fought over who would take credit for the discovery.  Appalling, I know, that the very same people who are educated in saving lives were accomplishing just the opposite out of greed and ego.

In 1987, right at the height of the “epidemic”, And The Band Played On first burst onto the scene as a book by San Francisco Chronicle columnist Randy Shilts and was later made into the aforementioned film in 1993 starring Matthew Modine and Alan Alda.

Andthebandplayed_book

Just as a reminder, remember that AIDS does NOT discriminate.  It’s a disease.  It doesn’t care if you are rich, poor, white or black.  It strikes without warning and there is no coming back from it.  It can NOT be transmitted by breathing the same air as someone who s infected or touching.  The ONLY was the virus can be transmitted is through bodily fluids or through unprotected sex.  It IS NOT, nor has it ever been a “gay” disease or “gay” cancer.

For events, donations and fund raising please log onto 2016 WORLD AIDS DAY EVENTS for more information.

Of course, this post would not be complete without giving a HUGE shoutout to the Original Dreamgirl – Miss Sheryl Lee Ralph for being consistent in raising funds for a cure and research through her annual event “Divas Simply Singing”.  For more info on that event, please log onto the Divas Simply Singing Website.

If you want to watch And The Band Played On, it can be seen in its entirety on YouTube.com.

Divas

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