Houston’s gay community was shaken during the holiday season by the brutal murder of a local gay man on the evening of Friday, December 10, 2010. Aaron Scheerhoorn, 28, was seen running down Crocker Street toward Pacific Street at approximately 11:30 p.m. Scheerhoorn was pursued by a man who caught him and stabbed him to death in the midst of the evening’s Montrose nightlife.
The attacker, Lydell Grant, was later apprehended and charged with murder. The Houston Police Department has released no information as to the motive, but says that the killing was “neither a robbery nor a hate crime.” Numerous unexplained questions remain about the behavior of the people who were closest to the scene of the murder.
Struggling to deal with the murder, Scheerhoorn’s closest friends organized a candlelight service on the evening after his death, at the murder site. A week later, on Friday evening, December 17, a candlelight march moved from the corner of Taft and Fairview to the murder site. A banner was hung that read “Do Not Fear Evil Men–Fear the Indifference of Good Men.”
A celebration of Scheerhoorn’s life was held at Bering Memorial United Methodist Church on the afternoon of Tuesday, December 21. A reception and wake was then held in the home of his close friend Jon Pike. Videos of the candlelight memorials and photos of Scheerhoorn were shared at the reception as his friends consoled each other and shared their favorite memories of his life.
Scheerhoorn is described by his close friend Nancy McGinnis-Roberts as “someone who had the ability to love across any type of boundary. He had a zeal for life that was unparalleled and was absolutely contagious. He had so many dreams and aspirations, and so much care and love for any and all that he came in contact with. Sometimes you just need someone such as Aaron to tell you, ‘You are unique, loved, and safe.’ He was a unique type of hero. He came into the mundane portions of this life and made them eclectic and electric.” —Brandon Wolf