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HIV activist Hydeia Broadbent remembered following her death at 39

US HIV/AIDS activist Hydeia Broadbent is being remembered for her lifelong work in fighting discrimination and stigma experienced by people living with the virus.

Broadbent’s family have announced her death at the age of 39, no cause of death has been given.

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“With great sadness, I must inform you all that our beloved friend, mentor and daughter Hydeia, passed away today after living with AIDS since birth,” her father Loren Broadbent said in a social media post. “Despite facing numerous challenges throughout her life, Hydeia remained determined to spread hope and positivity through education around HIV/AIDS.”

Broadbent was adopted as an infant by Loren Broadbent and his wife Patricia after she was abandoned at a hospital in Las Vegas. When she was three years old, she was diagnosed with HIV, having been born with the virus.

As a child she appeared on many programs sharing her experience and helping breakdown barriers and she is considered a pioneer as the first African American youths to publicly speak about living with HIV.  By the time she was 12 years old she had made appearances on The Oprah Winfrey Show, 20/20 and Good Morning America.

As a child she also appeared alongside basketballer Magic Johnston on a Nickelodeon program to speak about her experiences.

Johnson made tribute to her achievements via a social media post.

“Hydeia changed the world with her bravery, speaking about how living with HIV affected her life since birth. She dedicated her life to activism and became a change agent in the HIV/AIDS fight. By speaking out at such a young age, she helped so many people, young and old, because she wasn’t afraid to share her story and allowed everyone to see that those living with HIV and AIDS were everyday people and should be treated with respect.”

He added, “Thanks to Hydeia, millions were educated, stigmas were broken, and attitudes about HIV/AIDs were changed.”

OIP Staff


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