Man whose General Mills anti-gay marriage protest went up in smoke has died

Michael Leisner's bungled effort had gone viral on YouTube

Man whose General Mills anti-gay marriage protest went up in smoke has died
15 August 2012

Michael Leisner was largely unknown until during a few moments in the last weeks of his life, he tried to light some Cheerios on fire in a bungled anti-gay protest that went viral.

Leisner, 65, of Andover, died over the weekend of unknown causes while waiting in his car for his sons to finish playing tennis, Dwight Denyes, senior pastor at Emmanuel Christian Center in Spring Lake Park tells the Star Tribune.

On 5 August, Leisner staged a one-man protest in front of General Mills headquarters in Minnesota because of the company’s support of same-sex marriage.

‘One out of every eight boxes of cereal in this country is Cheerios,’ he was seen saying. ‘This is really the treat now for the homosexuals. This is our protest of General Mills, because they’re advocating same-sex marriages. So we are gonna torch some cereal.’

However, his attempts to set the popular breakfast food on fire don’t quite go to plan when the box went up in flames instead.

Throwing the box on the ground,  Leisner tried to tackle the blaze, stomping on the cereal fireball in vain. He did not appear to see the funny side of his failed attempts to smite the Cheerios company but the camera crew can be heard laughing.

Leisner could be heard shouting: ‘OK, get out of here, guys. Quick!’

The video quickly went viral and Leisner the object of ridicule.

His pastor admitted to not knowing Leisner well but said the video doesn’t accurately reflect who he was as an individual. He was a very loving and caring father of his four children, a loving husband and he seemed to get along with other people.’

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

TV's The Golden Girls were well ahead of the curve on gay marriage

Watch as Blanche has an epiphany about her gay brother during kitchen table chat with Sophia
No thumbnail available

Just Drew: Life after My Transsexual Summer

Blond, Tangoed, leggy makeup artist of Illamasqua and Channel 4 star from My Transsexual Summer, Drew-Ashlyn, starts her new column for GSN
No thumbnail available

Cher developing a show for Logo

The TV channel Logo snags Cher as a writer for an upcoming show
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

The top 100 LGBTI business leaders and straight allies revealed

Christopher Bailey, CEO and Chief Creative Officer at Burberry, and ‘straight ally’ Sir Richard Branson at Virgin, top this year’s rankings
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Archbishop of Dublin hits out at same-sex marriage opponents who resort to 'obnoxious' language

Calling for a calm and respectful discussion, he said the language used in the correspondence he had received from those who oppose gay marriage was 'obnoxious, insulting and unchristian in regard to gay and lesbian people'
No thumbnail available

Ricky Martin talks about gay marriage debate

'I wish people understood that love manifests in different ways'
No thumbnail available

Acclaimed India actor Manoj Bajpayee 'accepts gays the way they are'

National Award-winner says he 'will go to any extent' to get his film about a gay professor past censors
No thumbnail available

Scotland 'can do better' in fight against trans hate

Scottish Human Rights Commission launches National Action Plan to tackle 'high levels' of transphobia