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Friends of Aaron

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This painting, entitled Embrace, was a collaborative effort of Nancy McGinnis-Roberts and the late Aaron Scheerhoorn. After his death, McGinnis-Roberts finished the piece. It will now be used in the logo for the Aaron Scheerhoorn Foundation for Change.

On the evening of Friday, December 10, 2010, 28-year-old Aaron Scheerhoorn was seen running down Crocker Street toward Blur Bar at 710 Pacific St. His shirt had been torn off, and there was a visible knife wound in his shoulder.

Standing on the balcony of Blur Bar, three witnesses—visitors from out of town—saw the horrific tragedy played out them. They had a clear view of Crocker and Pacific streets. And right beneath them stood three Blur Bar doormen, all in black shirts.

According to their account, Scheerhoorn pleaded with the doormen to allow him in, and showed them the stab wound in his shoulder. He was told to “take his problem somewhere else.”

One can only assume that Scheerhoorn then thought of running to The 611 for refuge—it being about two blocks away. He began running, but collapsed in the parking lot of Blur Bar, and his pursuer caught up to him and stabbed him several more times.

What Blur Bar Says

Reached for comment by OutSmart, the manager of Blur Bar released the following statement:

“I thought a little more about what you were asking and think it is appropriate for me to state our perspective of the unfortunate incident that occurred in front of the club even though I did not personally witness the event.

“Apparently, according to my staff, the victim suddenly rushed towards the front of the club and was barely coherent. Of course, we later found out that he had already been stabbed elsewhere and his assailant was in pursuit. By the time anyone could decipher what he was trying to say, the assailant was already upon him. No one could tell that he was stabbing the victim again, as the knife was not large and was not readily visible. It appeared that the assailant was attacking the victim and it was not immediately known that he was being stabbed.

“The assailant vacated the scene quickly, and one of my employees took off after him in pursuit but could never catch him.

The fact is that everything happened extremely quickly, and the gravity of the victim’s plight was not obvious.”

Doug Anderson, Nancy McGinnis-Roberts, and Sara Magnero visit the Quarterly Community Leaders Meeting. Magnero was a friend of Scheerhoorn’s for over a decade. Photo by Brandon Wolf

Aaron’s Friends Work to Remember Him

Scheerhoorn’s friends disagree with Blur Bar’s version of the incident, and feel that their friend’s death was completely preventable—that the apathy of the doormen led to Aaron’s untimely and brutal death. They have become determined that their friend will be remembered as more than Houston Homicide Case #285.

In the six weeks since Scheerhoorn’s death, a group of close friends and other supporters have met to talk about what to do in Aaron’s memory. They have visited the Quarterly Community Leaders Meeting at the Houston GLBT Community Center, and discussed their effort on KPFT’s Queer Voices.

On Thursday, January 20, the group held their first organizational meeting
in the 2nd floor community room at Kroger, 1938 West Gray St. Long-time activist Ray Hill serves as temporary chair until the group is able to nominate and elect officers.

The Group’s Vision

The group decided that their name will be the Aaron Scheerhoorn Foundation for Change. They are already working on the legal aspects of making this into a charitable entity.

Within the entity, two main functions have been identified. The first is a “Safe Shelter” program. Members of the organization will speak to community business owners and ask them to sign a “safe shelter” agreement.

The second function is a new community patrol, somewhat similar to the former Q-Patrol. The group would be known as Aaron’s Angels and would serve as monitors of the Montrose club area on weekend nights.

For further information on the new group, contact Doug Anderson at 713/382-1849 or [email protected], or Nancy McGinnis-Roberts at 832/338-6291 or [email protected]

SEE UPDATE: Aaron Scheerhoorn Foundation for Change Meeting on Feb 10, 2011


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Brandon Wolf

Brandon Wolf is a regular contributor to OutSmart Magazine.

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