The story of porn star Eric Stryker, is just one of hundreds on The AIDS Memorial Instagram page @theaidsmemorial an archive of poignant and important personal of those who died of HIV and AIDS.
We are lucky enough to live in the era of "U = U" or Undetectable + Untransmittable," thanks to the innovation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), when those who are HIV+ can now safely have sex without fear of transmitting the virus to their partners.
Below is Eric Stryker's story, lifted from @theaidsmemorial, but please go to the Instagram page, scroll, read, remember.
"Michael Skrzypcak aka Eric Stryker (September 24, 1954 – February 19, 1988) was a gay adult film performer who died of AIDS in California. He was 33 years old.
Born in Erie, Pennsylvania, Skrzypcak served in the US Air Force, rising to the rank of Sergeant. After retiring, he worked as a construction worker in Phoenix and then relocated to Los Angeles and began modeling for Colt Studios.
In 1984, just after his lover died from AIDS, Skrzypcak was diagnosed with HIV. He became an AIDS activist and continued studying at @woodbury_university. Skrzypcak also worked with the AIDS Couples Group and lectured around America for AIDS Project Los Angeles. In 1987, Skrzypcak appeared in the @pbs documentary, ‘It Starts With A’ — his last film appearance.
In his last public appearance, his body disfigured with Kaposi's sarcoma, Skrzypcak marched in the Christopher Street parade in West Hollywood. However not long after, on February 1988, he succumbed to AIDS at Sherman Oaks Community Hospital." – @theaidsmemorial
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