Ciora, 27, Says Trans People Have the Strength of Two Souls #AMPLIFY

Pittsburgh Trans Woman

Name: Ciora Thomas

Age: 27

County of Residence: Allegheny

Preferred Pronouns:  she/her/hers

How do you describe your identity? I’m a Bi Transwomn.

Please describe your coming out experience. Where did you find support? What challenges did you face? My coming out experience wasn’t really a coming out more so i got caught by my step father and my family then turned on me. I found support in downtown Pittsburgh and the GLCC when it was in Squirrel Hill ran by Lyndsey Sickler. I faced many challenges the main being a homeless trans teenager.

Black Trans Woman Brandi Bledsoe, 32, Murdered in Cleveland

Brandi Bledsoe

It is with great sadness and anger that I read about the murder of 32 year old black trans woman, Brandi Bledsoe. Her body was discovered over the weekend near her Cleveland home.

Brandi had a job, a passion for art and the support of at least some of her family. Yet, she did not escape the cycle of unrelenting violence against trans women. She also did not escape being misgendered by police or the media, the final indignity that weaves it’s tentacle into almost all of these stories of the lives of our trans neighbors.

From (note – they use her old name)

Bledsoe was found dead about 10 a.m. in the driveway behind a home on Drexel Avenue, near East 108th Street. 

She was wearing only underwear and had white plastic bags covering her head and both hands, according to police reports.

A 5-year-old boy discovered her body while riding bikes with his 12-year-old brother.  

Police also said she had head trauma. Cleveland police spokesman Jennifer Ciaccia said investigators will take her transgender status into consideration in the investigation. She said the investigation is in its early stages and it’s too early to determine of motive for Bledsoe’s death. 

No arrests have been made in the case.

Why People Share Their Stories With #AMPLIFY

LGBT History Month Pittsburgh

In June 2015, we added this question to the Q&A

“What motivated you to take part in this project?”

The responses have been enlightening when I consider why people take 30-60 minutes to share some of their most personal thoughts with the wide world. Their investment isn’t fleeting – the Q&A will live on as our archived collective experiences.

I particularly wanted to participate because I wanted an older perspective to be included.”

RIP Jazz Alford, Black Trans Woman Murdered in Alabama


Jazz Alford was 30 years old and a native of North Carolina. She was also a black trans woman discovered dead in a Birmingham, Alabama motel in late September. Alford was deliberately misgendered by police (and the media) as part of their investigation process.

Alford’s sister, Toya Milan, who is also a trans woman reached out to media to clarify Jazz’ true identity.

Police have arrested a 23-year-old man, Denzell Thomas for another shooting of a trans woman and he is now a suspect in the Alford case. The other victim survived and is hospitalized as she recovers from her injuries.

TWOC Crystal Edmonds Murdered in Baltimore

Crystal Edmonds Trans

Crystal Edmonds, 32, a trans woman of color who lived in Baltimore died Friday from gunshot wounds to the back of her head. Crystal is the 21st known transgender person to be murdered in 2016 in the United States. She is also the third person whose death I’ve blogged about this week and the second […]

Maine Trans Woman Found Dead in Reservoir

Lexxi Sironen

On the heels of learning about the brutal murder of T.T. in Chicago this past weekend, I was saddened to read more tragic news on the Transgriot blog. 43 year old Lexxi Sironen’s body was found floating in the Kennebec River on September 6 at 8:15 AM EDT near the water reservoir of the Brookfield […]

Trans Woman Murdered in Chicago on September 11 UPDATED

Trans Woman Murdered Chicago

Updated with T.T.’s full name. T.T. Saffore was 27 years old, according to her friends quoted in a Windy City Times story covering this crime. She was a hair stylist, enjoyed being around children and a support for other trans women in her neighborhood. She had family support. She is also the 20th known trans […]

Forbes Hospital’s Inadequate Response to Transphobic Employees


Via KDKA TV, last night I learned about a developing story at Forbes Hospital in Monroeville. Some anonymous female employees at this Allegheny Health Network facility had voiced complaints about a trans woman employee being permitted to use the ladies bathroom. First, the good. Allegheny Health Network is following the law with regard to allowing […]

Samantha, 44, Wants Better Trans Health Choices in Pennsylvania #AMPLIFY


Name: Samantha Age: 44 County of Residence: Allegheny Preferred Pronouns: Her, she, b*tch, LOL How do you describe your identity? I am a Trans woman questioning my sexual preference. Please describe your coming out experience. Where did you find support? What challenges did you face? I truly was lucky. I found support everywhere. The biggest challenge was telling my Mom. We […]

“Your Story Can Heal” Says Rain, 26, #AMPLIFY

Demisexual Greene Washington Allegheny counties

At the end of the day, your silence is damaging. Your story can heal and make people feel like they’re not alone. Name:  Rain Age:  26 ** Update – I made an error and listed Rain’s age as 44. I am sorry for the error. – Sue County of Residence:  Allegheny, formerly Washington and Greene Preferred […]