Remembering Christina Santiago
At least four people were killed and dozens more injured yesterday at the Indiana State Fair when a storm caused a stage to collapse. CNN has more coverage and video here.
Among those lost was Christina Santiago, manager of programming for the Lesbian Community Care Project at Howard Brown Health Center in Chicago, IL. The Chicago Sun-Times has more coverage here.
She is survived by her partner Alisha, who was seriously injured in the same accident. Our thoughts are with all who mourn the loss of Christina. Their grief is personal, but the whole LGBT, Latino and progressive community will clearly be poorer for Ms. Santiago’s absence.
A statement from Howard Brown after the fold.
From Howard Brown Health Center:
CHICAGO (August 14, 2011) – On Saturday, Howard Brown Health Center (HBHC) lost a treasured colleague and a community champion for women’s health, Christina Santiago, manager of programming for the Lesbian Community Care Project (LCCP) at HBHC. Santiago died tragically with four others when a concert stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis.
“The sudden and devastating loss of Christina has left the entire community, including her Howard Brown Health Center family, heartbroken,” said Jamal M. Edwards, President and CEO of Howard Brown Health Center. “Christina was an amazing woman – one of our very brightest stars – who worked tirelessly to improve the lives of women, particularly lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer women. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Christina’s friends and family, and her beautiful partner Alisha Brennon, who is also a dear friend of HBHC and was severely injured, but not killed, in the accident.”
“Santiago was our manager of the Lesbian Community Care Project (LCCP) at Howard Brown Health Center, and worked at the health center for nearly six years. She has been a leading and driving force in the expansion of our women’s health services division and a powerful advocate for all LGBT women,” continued Edwards.
During her career at HBHC, Santiago was quickly recognized as a rising star. She recently received HBHC’s 2010 Spirit Award; the highest staff honor. With a list of honors from outstanding employee recognitions to being named to the Windy City Times’ “30 Under 30” list in 2007, Christina was an instrumental figure in the expansion of our women’s health services division as the manager of LCCP and a strong advocate for the LGBTQ women’s community.
Santiago was helping lead HBHC’s new women’s health initiative for LBTQ women through the LifeCycle Project, a healthcare initiative designed to meet the growing needs of the entire LGBTQ community throughout the entire lifecyle.
“Her passion and leadership for caring for others will be deeply missed by the Howard Brown family and the LGBTQ community. Her star is irreplaceable both at HBHC and in the community” added Edwards.
HBHC and Amigas Latinas are hosting a short vigil to mourn Christina and pray for her partner, Alisha, on Sunday at 5pm at HBHC’s Sheridan Road Clinic.