Daniel Sotomayor was born on August 30, 1958. He grew up in the Humbolt Park area of Chicago, at troubled youth of Mexican and Puerto Rican descent. He attended Prosser High School, studied acting at the Center Theatre, attended the American Academy of Art and graduated from Columbia College with a degree in graphic arts. He began to pursue a career in acting and graphic design.
Daniel's HIV seroconversion and sudden diagnosis with AIDS in 1988 shattered his personal and professional aspirations awakening in him the activist who changed forever the standard by which LGBT community leaders are judged.
After joining ACTUP/CHICAGO, Daniel proceeded through sheer force of will to propel that organization to its highest effective visibility. Daniel became widely known for his public confrontations with Mayor Richard M. Daley to bring attention to the AIDS crisis, the Chicago Health Department's responsibility to implement the City's AIDS Strategic Plan and inadequate education, prevention and media programs.
Daniel also established himself as the first nationally syndicated, openly gay political cartoonist. During his brief but brilliant three years career, he created over two hundred scathing, and often humorous, cartoons illustrating his anger with AIDS, with government inaction, with the insurance industry, the health care system, pharmaceutical companies and, frequently, with AIDS activists themselves.
Daniel has left his indelible mark on the AIDS movement, on the LGBT community's awakening as a political force, on the minds of "leaders" who have had reason to fear his unblinking honesty, and on the hearts of those who came to know the human being behind the headlines. Daniel's relentless pursuit of the truth helped him to live his life with a consistency of ethic that most of us can only aspire towards. In doing so, he changed forever the definition of "leader".
Daniel died as he lived-- fighting-- on February 5, 1992, at the age of 33. Daniel's lover, Scott McPherson, in spite of variable and increasingly failing health, completed two commissioned screenplays and was working on a new play until shortly before his death, on November 7, 1992, at the same age of 33.
Marvin's Room is a play by written by Scott McPherson that premiered off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons on 15 November 1991, and later adapted for a film of the same title in 1996. The play is based upon McPherson's experiences with AIDS in his family and with his lover Daniel Sotomayor.
Out and Proud in Chicago: An Overview of the City's Gay Community by Tracy Baim
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Agate Surrey (September 1, 2008)
Amazon: Out and Proud in Chicago: An Overview of the City's Gay Community
Out and Proud in Chicago takes readers through the long and rich history of the city's LGBT community. Lavishly illustrated with color and black-and white-photographs, the book draws on a wealth of scholarly, historical, and journalistic sources. Individual sections cover the early days of the 1800s to World War II, the challenging community-building years from World War II to the 1960s, the era of gay liberation and AIDS from the 1970s to the 1990s, and on to the city's vital, post-liberation present.
Marvin's Room by Scott McPherson
Paperback: 72 pages
Publisher: Dramatists Play Service, Inc. (January 1998)
Amazon: Marvin's Room
The tale of one family's journey through humor and heartache, seperation and self-discovery, "Marvin's Room" examines the ties that bind families together ....whether they like it or not.
Actors: Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton, Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert DeNiro
Format: Color, DVD, Widescreen, NTSC
Studio: Echo Bridge Home Entertainment
DVD Release Date: May 3, 2011
Amazon: Marvin's Room
Leonardo DiCaprio (TITANIC, CATCH ME IF YOU CAN) drives an electrifying performance as the criminally rebellious son in this funny and stirring tale of one family's humor and heartache. Seventeen years ago, fiercely independent Lee (Meryl Streep -- ADAPTATION) left home ... and left behind her kindhearted sister Bessie (Diane Keaton -- THE FIRST WIVES CLUB) to care for their father, Marvin (Hume Cronyn). But now Lee is returning with her teenage son (DiCaprio), for a homecoming that's sure to turn the entire household upside down! Also starring Robert DeNiro (CASINO), this entertaining motion picture proves that people you know the least may be the ones you need the most!