Casey Hoke, a 21-year-old transgender activist and public speaker in California, has died.
His family confirmed Hoke died at his home in Pomona, California last Wednesday (8 August).
Ryan, Hoke’s brother, made a post on Hoke’s Facebook account confirming the news.
‘My family is heartbroken,’ Ryan wrote. ‘We ask for privacy, but at the same time want to make sure Casey’s friends and connections know.’
Ryan further told the Los Angeles Blade: ‘Casey lost his battle with mental illness.’
Hoke came out as trans in high school and dedicated the rest of his life to the community, working as an activist, speaker, and role model.
A life to inspire
In his 21 years, Hoke did a lot of work for the community. He gave TEDx Talks and wrote for the Huffington Post and MTV News on LGBTQ topics.
He also had a relationship with GLSEN (formerly theGay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network). In 2014, he served as a student ambassador for them and, most recently, was also a board member.
‘I have known Casey since he was in high school and he was a remarkable force of light, love, art, and power in the world,’ Dr. Eliza Byard, the Executive Director of GLSEN, told the LA Blade.
‘He was a sitting member of our board of directors and also often contributed his artwork to our cause. I am so grateful to have known and worked with him. He touched so many lives and he will always inspire me to press on and stop hate.’
Hoke was a student at California State Polytechnic University of Pomona for graphic design communications. He was also a Point Foundation scholar.
This organization posted their own thoughts on Facebook.
Last week, we lost a beloved member of our Point Family, Casey Hoke. Casey is remembered through the memories our…
‘Casey is remembered through the memories our community holds and through the work he shared,’ the statement reads.
‘Casey showed great passion in his Point community service project,QueerArtHistory.com, and was committed to celebrating stories of queer expression. We are immensely grateful for his impact on our community and each of our lives. The love and warmth Casey brought to every space he was in will be truly missed.’
The QueerArtHistory website was a project Hoke was working on. It aims to serve as an educational resource to learn about the visual storytelling of LGBTI identities.