Bryan Drake

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Bryan Earl Drake
11 Apr 1951 - 10 Nov 1991

Clubs & Associations

Chesapeake Squares
DC Lambda Squares
Independence Squares


In Memory of Bryan...
by Ett McAtee

It saddens me to report that we have lost one of our most interested, active, and hard-working student callers, Bryan Drake. On Sunday, November 10, 1991, Bryan died due to complications associated with AIDS.

Bryan is remembered by all who knew him as a rather shy, reserved fellow, who had a great sense of humor and wit that shone through as he got to know you. He was originally a member of the Philadelphia Independence Squares in their beginning days, and moved to the Washington D.C. area in September of 1989 to pursue career opportunities in Northern Virginia. Shortly after moving, he promptly became a full-fledged member of both the DC Lambda Squares and Baltimore's Chespaeake Squares.

Bryan was always very concrete and down-to-earth about everything. He knew where he was and where he wanted to be in any given situation. As Anne Uebelacker once said of Bryan, he is a "black-and-white" kind of guy, always solid. I was fortunate enough to share many dry moments of humor with Bryan as we had dinner together on many occasions.

I would like to suggest that if anyone wishes to make a memorial contribution, however much, in the name of Bryan Drake, this could be done to benefit the Gay Callers Association. I know that Bryan was always a strong supporter of the Association, and only wished he was well enough for long enough to do some more calling on his own. Send any contributions you wish to Ed Conley, 79 Elgin Park, San Francisco, California. I have already dedicated my first dance that I called for our club, Chesapeake Squares, to the memory of Bryan, and I know he is watching me from the great calling school up in the sky. Yellowrocks to you, Bryan! You were loved! We will miss you at all our dances and conventions.[1]

Bryan Drake was one of three angels that helped with the formation of Independence Squares in 1988 and 1989. While a member of the DC Lambda Squares and the Chesapeake Squares, he was always there to support the new group in Philadelphia that did not even have a name when he was convinced to help this struggling group of new dancers. As described by those who knew him well, he was quiet and gentle with a serious side and an infinite amount of patience. Throughout that first year, his patience was tested as he put up with all the shenanigans of this group of mostly gay men who were out to have a good time. He got us through two classes from the fall of 1988 and the spring of 1989 and then accompanied us all to Peel The Apple in New York City in July 1989 where Independence Squares was brought into the IAGSDC. We as a club should be forever thankful to him and our other angels for their patience and even-tempered demeanor in setting us on our road to square dance history and/or infamy.
Mike Rutkowski and Tim Harper[2]

Memorial Panel

  • 1UR | DC Lambda Squares, Independence Squares


  1. The Call Sheet newsletter, no.13 (22 Dec 1991) p.2
  2. Email, 28 Feb 2021