Healthcare

AIDS activists recruit Barbra Streisand for surprise Fauci birthday party on Zoom

Director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases Dr. Anthony Fauci is see with a Washington Nationals face mask when he arrives to testify during the US Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee hearing to examine COVID

A group of friends who worked with Anthony Fauci during the AIDS crisis in the 1980s hosted a surprise Zoom birthday party Thursday for the nation’s top infectious diseases expert.

Treatment Action Group (TAG) co-founder Peter Staley tweeted that he and “a small gang of Tony Fauci’s HIV/AIDS comrades managed to surprise him” on his 80th birthday.

Other participants included TAG co-founders Gregg Gonsalves and David Barr, as well as Barr’s husband Sam Avrett. Whitman Walker Clinic co-founder Lawrence Deyton, Fauci’s former colleague, also joined in the surprise party.

Staley added that Barbra Streisand, who Fauci “goes on and on about,” recorded a personalized message for his birthday and sent signed CDs and an LP to him.

“After thirty minutes, we told him to go home and stay home for his birthday: ‘Take the day OFF!’ God knows he needs and deserves it,” Staley tweeted. “Happy birthday, Tony. Thank you for all you’ve done for the world this year. Here’s to many more.”

Fauci, who has served as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, was frequently accused of insufficient attention to the AIDS crisis early in the epidemic by gay activists, including the late writer Larry Kramer.

However, he was eventually able to form alliances with members of the community. Years later, Kramer would call Fauci “the only true and great hero” in the government’s response to the epidemic.

Tags Anthony Fauci Barbra Streisand Birthday Coronavirus COVID-19 HIV/AIDS Pandemic Zoom

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