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2018 was a year of deaths for me. Really makes you think how short our time is. While away for Christmas, I heard that we lost Hector Xtravaganza on December 30. For a variety of reasons, that news punched me in the memory gut.

I haven't seen Hector in many years. In the early 1980's, I met him in the Ball scene, and then I worked with him on a couple of projects. I remember always enjoying his presence and personality.

He was a Latin cutie back then; tall, lean, handsome, with a glint of sex-god in his eye. I did not know that Ryan Murphy had hired him to consult on "Pose."

Here are two articles worth reading:

Hector Xtravaganza NYTimes Memorial

Hector Xtravaganza has Died

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hector.jpg.1d8237e49f4b8d110b25939d8659a804.jpg

 

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10 hours ago, nycman said:

He was a beautiful man inside and out.

Jacob Bernstein in the NY Times wrote: "He had first sashayed onto the Christopher Street piers in search of approval, community and transcendence sometime in the late ’70s. That he found and held onto it for roughly 40 years, triumphing over racism, homophobia and H.I.V., without having a high school diploma, speaks to both the magic that exists beside the universe’s injustices and the restorative abilities of cameras, spotlights and microphones on underprivileged pier queens with a penchant for the dramatic.

He believed that his life was an opera and that it would have a happy ending. His favorite phrase was “still moist,” which, translated from the queen’s English, means essentially: “It’s all good.”"

Hector was known for being a beautiful man inside and out. When he walked into a room, he lit the place up simply by entering. Everyone wanted to know him. Everyone wanted to be his friend. I imagine tons of guys wanted to have sex with him. I suppose many did.

At a young age, he possessed unmistakable charisma. There was a certain angelic and devilish quality competing, always with a beautiful smile and a twinkle in the eye. Hector had the "it" factor, and he didn't need to dress in women's drag to be the star of the show.

He brought all his star power to the House of Extravaganza. "Paris Is Burning" didn't hit movie theaters until 1991. The house balls made history in NYC long before that. The Extravas were known to focus on beauty and glamour realness. They attracted star dancers as well. Their house got serious attention from Annie Flanders over at Details Magazine. Hector graced its pages as Details covered the Downtown club scene throughout the 80's. Madonna hired two Exravas to choreograph her hit video, "Vogue." In many ways, Hector was responsible for bringing the house ball stars Downtown, away from their home in Harlem. He was a pivotal character in house balls going mainstream. It made perfect sense for Ryan Murphy to hire Hector to consult on "Pose." I regret not knowing the status of Hector's health. It sounds like he kept that very private, and I totally understand that.

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The article brought back so many amazing memories of NYC in my early years.  I was lucky to have a "Diva Father" who took me under his wing and introduced me to gay NYC.  My life would not have been the same without him. Many of the people mentioned I heard stories about, met or read about. What a great legacy so many of them left and such an easier life they made it for all of us.

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1 hour ago, TotallyOz said:

The article brought back so many amazing memories of NYC in my early years.

It flooded my brain and heart. Made me connect with certain people who are not part of my daily grind. I'm very behind on screeners. Had to push the first episode of "Pose" to the front of the line because of Hector's death. I was thrilled to see him numerous times playing a Ball judge. I was hoping Ryan Murphy would have given him his moment. Perhaps in subsequent episodes.

1 hour ago, TotallyOz said:

I was lucky to have a "Diva Father" who took me under his wing

I sort of had the same. My dear friend was hugely successful, and he believed in me from day one of our friendship. I owe much of my success to him.

Edited by RockHardNYC

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