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Dab Garner’s 30 year story of survival.

Storytelling is a crucial part of our culture, and not simply for entertainment value. Sharing our stories can heal our pain, educate others, and help us relive our happiest triumphs.

This video is quite simple, really. One man explains to you what happened to him, from becoming one of the first AIDS patients in San Francisco to his life today in the service of others with HIV. Dab Garner has clearly put things into perspective, and his calm manner shows a man at peace with his fate, his survival, and the ghosts around him.

Dab AIDS BearIt’s an amazing story, actually. And considering the importance of passing our history down to younger people, it might not be a bad idea to share this video with someone you know, maybe even someone under 35 years old.

But for now, let’s allow Dab Garner to simply speak for himself.

Thanks for watching, and please be well.




Protest11The latest volley in the debate among prevention advocates regarding “test and treat” is an interesting article by AIDS Healthcare Foundation consultant James Driscoll. His Washington Post piece, “HIV Treatment can be HIV prevention,” urges more access to medications and better funding for programs like the AIDS Drug Assistance Program. Driscoll is convinced that we can get a handle on the epidemic through increased testing and by treating those who test positive. As he writes: “Science has proven what many at the people doing primary care and others at the forefront of the epidemic have long suspected: HIV treatment is remarkably effective HIV prevention. A recent study from the National Institutes of Health has shown that treating HIV patients with antiviral drugs makes them 96 percent less likely to pass on the virus.”



By | 2011-06-28T13:29:12+00:00 June 28th, 2011|Living with HIV/AIDS, My Fabulous Disease, News|9 Comments


  1. Maxie June 28, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    Thanks for the interview with Dab…a true Hero!!

  2. Lain Benjamin June 28, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    Thank you for sharing Dab’s story with us Mark. I always exchange pleasantries with Dab each time I see him, but have never heard his story. As I write this I have tears on my computer keyboard. Lots of Love!

  3. tom June 28, 2011 at 8:08 pm

    What a great story, it has been 27 yrs. for me and I get so excited to see others who have survived this. Thankyou Dab!

  4. Czarina Flo June 29, 2011 at 9:57 am

    Unbelievably moving video by such a heroic yet unassuming man. Thanks for posting, Mark. I’m not your typical reader – your target audience – as you know, since I think you know me by now. But I was there when friends were dying of what the newspapers were calling ‘the Gay Plague’.

    I do what I can to educate people, and I am in a position to remind women that they too must be vigilant. A growing percentage are contracting HIV, often from husbands and boyfriends. On my way to see if I can pick up a Dab the Bear online. Thanks for all you do, Mark.

  5. timotheus June 29, 2011 at 4:16 pm

    Very touching and quietly eloquent. Thanks for producing it.

  6. Robert Darrow June 30, 2011 at 10:30 am

    Nice to hear pre-ACT-UP and pre-Broadway Bears experiences. What a difference one life can make!

  7. Gary Mello July 1, 2011 at 7:40 am

    Very cool video, always enjoy hearing from long term survivors, i would suggest reading my life story also. I collapsed in 1992, a fully healthy Marine, diagnoses from the beginning AIDS. I wrote about my life and how insane things become in your own mind. This is also my way to fight back. http://www.pushingthelimitbook.com

  8. Jennifer Martin July 1, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Thank you, Mark, for another wonderful piece of humanity. I was fortunate enough to leave Chattanooga for a bit last week and went to NYC Pride and also went to see Larry Kramer’s masterpiece, The Normal Heart, on Broadway. People need these reminders of what was…and we need to recognize and celebrate the many heroes and heroines our community holds past, present, and future…thank you to Dab and Larry…and the heroes whose names I do not know…

  9. Mike Stone January 26, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    What a wonderful kind man Dab is. A true inspiration.
    I am truly touched and humbled by a remarkable
    man such as this.

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