A Tribute to Denise Anderson

The trustees of the Gender Identity Research and Education Society wish to pay heartfelt tribute to Denise Anderson, the charity’s Web Manager who has died, having succumbed very rapidly to melanoma. This note is an expression of our gratitude for Denise’s excellent work and grief that she has been taken from us. We miss Denise greatly, as a friend and as a colleague, for whom we had great affection. We are deeply grateful for her many years of excellent service to the charity.

Denise was never one to look for the limelight but we believe she deserves for others to know the wonderful hard work she has done for the trans community. Denise strove tirelessly for many years on their behalf to make the world a better place for all of them. We are determined to protect all Denise’s excellent work, on the Website, TranzWiki, e-mail lists and social media and make full continuing use of this valuable legacy for the benefit of trans people and those who care for them.

We especially wish to record our sympathy for Michael Gardiner, Denise’s partner, who is just simply raw from emotion and pain from the shock of losing the most wonderful person in his life so suddenly.

There are people all over the country who have expressed their sorrow at her passing. On social media this has been in the hundreds and a number have enquired about what will be done to mark her loss as they wish to be included. Many of you will wish to pay your own respects to Denise and to Michael. Immediately, there will be very simple direct cremation with no service. Her ashes will be scattered in the same location as she and Michael said goodbye to her parents a few years ago, at a favourite spot of theirs on the Dorset coast.

This simple arrangement is as Denise wished. She had not wanted a traditional funeral as she was not religious in a conventional sense. Her spirituality was of the wonder of nature, wildlife and love of people and life. It is planned to have a full memorial event at some time in the near future. This is to allow the many people who knew her to gather and express their love and loss at her passing. This will be done in a way that will ensure that we can all celebrate the life and love of this amazing wonderful person, in the spirit she would have liked.

Michael will give us notice of that event in due course. Meanwhile, he still feels her love and spirit around him, which is more than anything what is keeping him going right now. He is grateful that he has the support of his family and a small number of close friends as without their help he is not sure how he would have coped up to now. He is grateful for the many comforting messages from the trans community.