One of the most powerful moments for me this year was attending Sacramento’s “Ain’t I A Woman” Black Women’s March in July. It was there that I met the warm and resilient Ms. Tammie Lewis, mother of Chyna Gibson. Her daughter was one of five Black transgender women murdered in February. Her death sent shockwaves through the LGBTQ community since she had graced stages as Chyna Doll Dupree for years.
As I stood behind the podium with Lewis, her niece, and my mother, I felt both pain and empowerment emanating from her presence. It’s rare that we hear from the parents of slain Black trans women, especially ones that affirm and respect their identities. Ms. Tammie gives us a glimpse of what the parents of transgender folks should all be like — unconditionally loving and unrelentingly supportive.
In this interview, I got the chance to delve into Gibson’s life and how her mother has garnered the strength to carry on her legacy.