Digital Media Center
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Gate 61
920 Paul Bryant Drive
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0370
(800) 654-4262

© 2024 Alabama Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Register for Glenn Miller Tickets in Mobile on May 30.

Libertee Belle, early Alabama LGBTQ activist, dies

Libertee Belle
Libertee Belle Facebook

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — A drag queen who was an early advocate of LGBTQ rights in Alabama has died.

The performer known as Libertee Belle was among the organizers of Central Alabama Pride in the 1980s and served as grand marshal of Birmingham's gay pride parade at least once.

She often performed at shows to benefit gay rights organizations and was among the highest-profile members of the state's LGBTQ community.

The activist was born Ronald Norman Simoneau Jr. His sister, Debi Simoneau, says he was 61.

Simoneau says the Navy veteran first performed in drag in Massachusetts and later got active in the gay community in Alabama.

Simoneau was found dead in his apartment on Thursday. A cause of death hasn't been released.

His sister says a memorial service is being planned for November.

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.
Related Content
News from Alabama Public Radio is a public service in association with the University of Alabama. We depend on your help to keep our programming on the air and online. Please consider supporting the news you rely on with a donation today. Every contribution, no matter the size, propels our vital coverage. Thank you.