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Taylor Remembered for Early AIDS Work

Prompted by Rock Hudson’s death, she fought the fight before it was cool

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Taylor in 2007.(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

In case you missed it, contributing editor Rachel Shukert published a gorgeous appreciation of Elizabeth Taylor yesterday in Tablet Magazine. One thing Shukert lists among Taylor’s accomplishments is her extremely early advocacy of AIDS awareness, in part prompted by the death of her friend, Rock Hudson, of AIDS in 1985.

“Dame Elizabeth was without doubt one of the most inspirational figures in the fight against AIDS,” amFAR, the AIDS research organization, said in a statement yesterday. “She was among the first to speak out on behalf of people living with HIV when others reacted with fear and often outright hostility. For 25 years, Dame Elizabeth has been a passionate advocate of AIDS research, treatment and care. She has testified eloquently on Capitol Hill, while raising millions of dollars for amfAR.”

Below, a Frontline segment details how Taylor personally got President Ronald Reagan to address the disease then ravaging America’s urban gay community for the only time during his presidency.

Watch the full episode. See more FRONTLINE.

Passion [Tablet Magazine]
Elizabeth Taylor’s Legacy: AIDS’s First Famous Advocate [ABC News]
Elizabeth Taylor’s Legacy on AIDS [Frontline]

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Taylor Remembered for Early AIDS Work

Prompted by Rock Hudson’s death, she fought the fight before it was cool

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