AIDS activist and author Larry Kramer has died from pneumonia (Picture: REUTERS)

Normal Heart writer and AIDS activist Larry Kramer dies aged 84


Oscar-nominated screenwriter Larry Kramer has died aged 84 after a battle with pneumonia and liver disease.

The playwright – who was best known for the Tony-Award winning The Normal Heart – passed away in New York on Wednesday (May 27).

Kramer had lived for decades with H.I.V. and underwent a liver transplant due to liver disease.

His cause of death was pneumonia, his husband, architect David Webster, confirmed to The New York Times.

Not only was he an accomplished playwright, he was also an author and a famous AIDS activist.

The Connecticut-born star began his career as a Teletype operator at Columbia Pictures when he was 23.
The award-winning playwright and author was a vocal activist for gay rights in the 80s (Picture: Catherine McGann/Getty Images)

He worked up to becoming a script rewriter and then a dialogue writer, before going on to write the 1969 Oscar-nominated screenplay for Women in Love.

Kramer then turned his focus onto writing stories about topics and themes such as gay rights and public health.

His play The Normal Heart centered on the early rise of the HIV/AIDS crisis in New York.
Kramer and actor Mark Ruffalo backstage after winning the Outstanding Television Movie award for HBO’s The Normal Heart (Picture: REUTERS)

It originally debuted in 1985 but had a 2011 revival which went on to earn several Tony awards.

In the 80s, Kramer contracted HIV, though the virus never progressed to AIDS.

During his career, Kramer was a founder of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis, an organization assisting those with HIV.

He was also a founder of the direct action group Act Up that demanded an end to the slow response to HIV treatment and research. 

Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda tweeted: ‘Don’t know a soul who saw or read The Normal Heart and came away unmoved, unchanged.

‘What an extraordinary writer, what a life. Thank you, Larry Kramer.’

While Janet Mock wrote: ‘Rest in power to an icon and true fighter until the very end. We thank you, Larry Kramer.’

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