Friday, March 2, 2012

Living With AIDS in Lynchburg

Whenever I buy the paper, which is usually at least once a week, I always read the obituaries. My grandmother does this, so maybe it runs in the family, I don't know, but I think we are just both curious about people and who they are/were, including strangers.

This week I recognized one of the names.

Nationwide, Jonathan "Jonny" Ervin's book may be quite controversial. I haven't read it, but the title may clue you in. The title reads,"My Secret Place: Living with AIDS and Addiction, A Man Who Gave up Homosexuality for God."

I never met Jonny, but he was well known in the area, not only for his testimony, but because of his talent in singing and as a master stylist. I also bonded with his son when he was only a child and because of that relationship, became close to his mother who confided in me about Jonathan's struggles.

He died of AIDS in peace on Monday. His son is a young man everyone would be proud to claim. I am happy to have shared in a part of his life. He'd say the same about his Dad.

Regardless of your position on homosexuality, AIDS continues to plague the world--and our own community. This weekend, I'll be attending an AIDS awareness collaboration at The Jubilee Center. I'm excited to see my neighbor preform a drama that she composed herself. She has known someone with AIDS--a straight, young woman--as we all probably have at some point in our lives, whether we know it or not.

I respect the courage he had to tell his story.

1 comment:

  1. You're right, no matter what your view of homosexuality, AIDS is real, scary and claims so many lives.