Finding Beauty Everywhere: Honoring the Life of Craig Kyte

In 2018, Pride Foundation was grateful to receive a generous gift of $10,000 in honor of Craig Kyte, a remarkable man who loved deeply and lived generously throughout this life.

Craig had a profound respect for the humanity that surrounded him—he loved art, literature, the symphony, and opera. He wrote poetry, and volunteered with the Peace Corps.

Above almost all else, he loved his job as a librarian with the Seattle Public Library. He dedicated his career to improving the library, and the awards he received over the years show this dedication: the Rinehart Librarian Award and the City Librarian’s Award. Both of these were awarded to him for his innovation and for revolutionizing the way the library operated. He was passionate about his job and had a robust career and incredibly meaningful relationships to show for it.

His family was the other piece of the puzzle—his partner of 28 years, Jim Bush, who was a professor of nursing at the University of Washington, and his two orange tabby cats, Harold and Memo, completed Craig’s life.

If you ask anyone about Craig, they would tell you that he had impeccable taste. He relished in decorating himself and his home. From perfectly pressed pants, to his tastefully decorated living room—Craig had a knack for decoration of any kind, as he was drawn to beauty in all its forms.

Craig lived a life filled with the things and people he loved. He used his life to affect change, whether it was through his time in the Peace Corps, his hard work at the library, or the relationships he cultivated with those around him. Craig had a big heart with room for everyone and everything.

As Craig got older, life became more challenging. The passing of his partner, Jim, and his retirement from the library proved to be immense difficulties, and Craig turned to alcohol as solace. Over the course of 11 years, Craig struggled with this addiction, and passed away from alcohol-related causes.

Throughout the end of his life, Craig remained kind, empathetic, and generous—and deeply loved by those around him. His neighbor and friend, Bryan, stepped into the role of caregiver, making sure his life was in order and his needs were taken care of. Bryan paid Craig’s bills, fed his cat, and kept him pushing forward to the very end.  

Mark, another close friend of more than 40 years, helped Craig detox in the months before his death. Craig lived out the last months of his life sober and surrounded by love. He was able to reconnect with those he’d lost touch with and left everyone with memories of the man they’d known for years. Craig passed away on November 1st, 2017.

Many of us understand what it feels like to be lonely and misunderstood. LGBTQ people in particular frequently struggle in silence without easy access to safe and prejudice-free care.

Craig’s life was one filled with beauty and pain, sadness and joy. In the end, he was able to lean on friends and family, who wanted to be there for him.

Mark gave this generous donation to Pride Foundation from Craig’s estate to honor the remarkable spirit of his dear friend Craig Kyte, and in recognition and gratitude for Bryan’s kindness and generosity to Craig in the last few years of his life. Through this gift, they are helping to ensure that Craig’s legacy lives on and nurtures the same beauty and generosity that Craig embodied throughout his life.

 

Marisa Kent was Pride Foundation’s Development Intern in 2018.

To read Craig’s full obituary, visit this page.

If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction, consult the resources below for support:

  1. SAMHSA Hotline: 1-800-662-4357
  2. Pacific Northwest Recovery: http://www.pacificnorthwestrecovery.com/
  3. Washington Recovery Helpline: 1-866-789-1511
  4. University of Washington Resource page: http://adai.uw.edu/hotlines.htm
  5. Treatment Center Locator: https://www.recovery.org/

 

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