Hal planned in advance for his memorial service, asking John to lead it. Hal arranged for a pink flyer to be distributed and asked John to open with an announcement (that ran two pages).
Hal was quite specific in his requests, meeting on Oct. 16 with John to specify where and when the service would be held, its length and format, specifying that his sisters were to be given priority and that he wanted no religious symbols present.
John's notes for the service indicate that he asked those present to share their thoughts and feelings. His own covered these areas:
This was to be both a celebration and a mourning. Hal asked that the service last no more than an hour -- again, controlling and exasperating till the end! John's suggestion: Forget it, Hal, we'll take as long as we need!
As mentioned below, Hal asked that gifts be made in his name to the Hetrick-Martin Institute in New York.
The service ended with the Joan Baez version of "Amazing Grace."
Hal's paid death notice in the New York Times is reproduced on the Sydney Park AIDS Memorial Groves site.
The following obituary was sent to us by a friend of Hal Bramson - Donald Comras - from the New York Times, 12 December 1994:
BRAMSON - Hal (Harold), 62, of New York City, of cancer, on December 11, 1994. Survived by sisters Ruth Streitfeld, Esther Solomon, and nieces and nephews and wonderful friends here and in Sydney, Australia. Hal was a volunteer of the Lesbian and Gay Switchboard, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, the Community Center's Library, was a founding member of ACT UP, and most recently enjoyed working in the kitchen of God's Love We Deliver. Hal requests donations be sent to the Hetrick Martin Institute, 2 Astor Place, NY, NY 10003, so that present and future generations of gay and lesbian youth do not have to go through the self-denial and emotional anguish he and so many of his generation endured.
Mothers March Against AIDS
Candlelight vigil & march
A personal expression to honor the dead and support the living
June 27, 2003
Christopher Street & Sheridan Square http://www.bgraffic.com/pdf_files/mmaa-program2003.pdf
Hal volunteered for Housing Works.
The largest AIDS activist group in the U.S., Housing Works empowers clients, staff, volunteers and supporters to take action: from phone zaps to Congressional visits to street-side civil disobedience on local, state, national and international AIDS issues.
THE LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL & TRANSGENDER COMMUNITY CENTER, 2007 Annual Report, p. 38
INSTITUTIONAL SUPPORT: MEMORIALS AND BEQUESTS
Each year brings sadness with the passing of several members of the Center family. Through their generosity and that of their friends and families, the Center has received a number of memorial gifts and bequests. These bequests ensure that the memory of those we have lost continues to stay alive, and their gifts perpetuate the work in which they so strongly believed. Each year we acknowledge the bequests and memorial funds that the Center has received since its inception with this very special Honor Roll. by helping and strengthening the Center, these bequests create a living memorial. We are saddened at the loss of our friends, proud of their leadership, and grateful for their generosity.