Jason Howard Green

Jason Howard Green

Friday, July 24, 2009

E. Lynn Harris - Dead at 54

Best selling author E. Lynn Harris is dead. Harris was on tour on the West Coast promoting his latest book Basketball Jones. His cause of death is still unknown. His assistant has stated that he noticed that author's health had been deteriorating but he still proceeded with the tour. I was lucky enough to meet Harris when he visited Phoenix earlier this year in the beginning of this tour. I was so pleased to meet this man that has been a significant motivation in my life.

E. Lynn Harris was born in Flint, MI but eventually settled down in the South. He was the first male cheerleader at the University of Arkansas and would remain until his death a tremendous U. of A. Razorbacks fan. He would eventually return to the school as a visiting professor of the English department and to continue his support of the cheerleading program.

For me, and the same can probably be said for many black gay men, E. Lynn Harris was a tremendous inspiration. His first book, Invisible Life, really opened my eyes to many things. It was reading his book tht I realized that I could live my life as an OUT gay black man. I really didn't know you could do that.

I am truly saddened to hear this news. It is a sad day for the African-American LGBT community. One of our greatest is no longer with us. I will make certain I share any additional news and more info is learned.


Anonymous said...

That was a nice way to sum his life and works up, this would have made him happy I'm sure, to know he was a positive influence on young black gay men in a world where there are so few. Its a sad day with this loss of such a great talent.

Jason Howard Green said...

Thank you for that comment. It totally agree with you. I hope our community appreciates what his works did. Before E Lynn Harris the black gay man was an invisible man.