Partner Harry Hay, buried together

Queer Places
University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California 90095, Stati Uniti
Nomenus Radical Faerie Sanctuary, 4525 Lower Wolf Creek Rd, Wolf Creek, OR 97497, Stati Uniti

John Lyon Burnside III (November 2, 1916 – September 14, 2008) was the inventor of the teleidoscope, the darkfield kaleidoscope and the Symmetricon.[1] Because he rediscovered the math behind kaleidoscope optics, for decades, every maker of optically correct kaleidoscopes sold in the United States paid him royalties. Harry Hay was his life partner from 1962 until Hay's death in 2002.

Harry Hay and Joel Burnside are profiled in ''Living happily ever after: couples talk about lasting love'', by Laurie Wagner, Stephanie Rausser, and David Collier (1996).

An only child born in Seattle, he was raised by his mother after his father abandoned the family; being poor, she periodically placed her son in the care of orphanages.

He served briefly in the United States Navy, and settled in Los Angeles in the 1940s.

Burnside and Hay formed a group in the early 1960s called the Circle of Loving Companions that promoted gay rights and gay love. In 1979 they were major planners of one of the first gay parades, a protest against exclusion of homosexuals from the military, held in Los Angeles. In 1967, they appeared as a gay couple on the Joe Pyne television show.

In the late 1970s, they founded, with Don Kilhefner and Mitch Walker, the Radical Faeries.[4]

Burnside married Edith Sinclair in Los Angeles. The pair had no children. Burnside later met Harry Hay in 1962 at ONE Incorporated; the two fell in love and became life partners.

Burnside was living in San Francisco, California,[2] at the time of his death on September 14, 2008 from complications of brain cancer at the age of 91.[3]

His ashes, mingled with those of his partner Harry Hay, were scattered in Nomenus Faerie Sanctuary, Wolf Creek, Oregon.[5]

Featured in Particular Voices: Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers by Robert Giard [Rights Notice: Copyright Jonathan G. Silin (jsilin@optonline.net)]

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  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Burnside_(inventor)