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on Monday, July 23, 2012 - 09:49
My two friends on the quilt were the first gay men I knew. They taught me more about being a friend to "different" people than anyone else in my life.....as they accepted me as their friend. Their panels made me cry.....
on Monday, July 23, 2012 - 08:02
How wonderful to be able to view the quilt on the National Mall yesterday. It was like re-connecting with my friend Eric Severson and his little dog, Bandit (who you can see on his panel). I find that I am always torn between celebrating that the world was privileged to know and share in the gifts and talents of all these people and lamenting what light there might have been had their lives not been cut short by HIV/AIDS. In the end, I am left with the clarity that while these individuals have come into our lives and quickly gone, they have touched our hearts and we are never again the same.
on Sunday, July 22, 2012 - 08:31
I have lost three people to Aids. A whole family, Especially felt the loss of my grandson born with the virus through no fault of his own. This was in 1987. I stand in the cemetary at their graves and mourn them. This is a lasting tribute to what they endured.
on Sunday, July 22, 2012 - 07:40
I drove up from FL to once again be part of the showing of the quilt. I have two sons with panels. Mark Bolivar died 10/06/87 at 29 years of age. Bill Bolivar died 11/26/91. I miss them everyday of my life and this quilt is the memorial I have to them. Both boys were cremated and these panels give evidence that they lived and their life and death counted on this planet of ours. I am now 74 years of age and 20 years after I am gone no one will know I was here but Bill and Mark will live on through the quilt. I have so much gratitude to Clive, The Names Project and the many sponsors and volunteers who are giving voice to the AIDS victims. There are no words to express the blessing you are. Thank you from a mother whose memories of her sons are of bright, happy, laughing, loving boys/men who made a difference then and still do today thanks to you.
Carolee Egan, mother of Bill and Mark Bolivar
on Friday, July 20, 2012 - 01:46
So Dear Quilt/ Old Friend,
Looks like you are going to the mall again but without me this time. I was there each time you were laid in your entirety on the lawn of the mall. I remember President "Ray-gun" flying over the panels in his Air Force One helicopter as you laid upon the Elipse. You were small enough then to take up just that much of the mall. Still you were impossible to miss. Yet he did or he chose to ignore you was more to the point.
The second time I brought my friend Jim's quilt to be added to the pattern. It was enough to tear an unmendable hole in my heart. Little did I know how many more panels I would make. I stopped at five. There was nothing left to make my baby brothers quilt when the third bout of pneumonia took him. I at least had the satisfaction of knowing that the Clinton's sent the VP and other dignitaries when you were laid at their feet.
I had to come back to DC when you were laid for your third time. It was bitter cold and I had three feet of port tubes hanging out of my chest but I was not going to miss being there. The Names Project gave us volunteers that night free sweat shirts to stave off the cold while we got the walkways laid for the next day. Thank you. That one kindness meant so much. Without it I would have had to leave and not kept my volunteer committment.
After 21 years of drugs everyday I just cannot find it in me to come for this historic event. To have the Quilt back when the International AIDS Conference is finally back in the United States helps to heal our countries image in the international community. We are more than our immagration policies, past and present. I am sorry that the quilt is being set up in many different places instead of all together as it was originally meant to be. I realize the impossibility of such a task given the Quilts current size but it was difficult enough to wander all over the mall to find the panels of friends and loved ones. The thought of having to go to several of 50 different locations is enough to make me throw in the towel.
For some you are a memorial to a friend, for others you represent a plague, for me you encompass my friends and partners as well as business associates and family. I look at you and have an entire community, generation, and life to mourn. I look forward to the world not needing you anymore.
In closing, treat our guests well during this conference, even the international sex workers, they are human and they have rights too. Oh, and could we please have a cure?
on Thursday, July 19, 2012 - 07:28
Last night a friend told me about the quilt returning to D.C. I opened this site and was so pleased to see what has been done with the quilt. After typing in my sons names I watched the panel appear before me and I began crying uncontrollably.
It was last seen by me when it was on the Mall many years ago.
Thank you for caring for the memorial my daughters and I made to remember the boys. I am now 74 years old and I will be getting in my car today and driving to D.C. to view it once again. It means so much to me to know that everyone can view it on this site so they will never be forgotten.
on Friday, July 13, 2012 - 12:48
Phillip, you are missed and thought of every day. You were such a joy with your healthy laugh to so many. Your friends and family are pleased to be able to view your Panel on aidsquilttouch.org. Awesome!!