1966-01-25

AARON FRICKE was born in Providence, Rhode Island. At the age of seventeen Frick decided to take a male date to the high school prom. “The simple thing would have been to go to the senior prom with a girl. But that would have been a lie — a lie to myself, to the girl, and to all the other students.”

He recounts the battle over that date in Reflections of a Rock Lobster: A Story About Growing Up Gay. Fricke successfully sued his high school for not allowing him to bring his boyfriend to the senior prom at Cumberland High School in Cumberland, Rhode Island. He later collaborated with his father, Walter, on a book about their relationship and of the elder Fricke’s coming to terms with his son’s homosexuality. 

That book, Sudden Strangers: The Story of a Gay Son and His Father, was published in 1989. It can be ordered here: http://www.amazon.com/Sudden-Strangers-Father-Stonewall-Editions/dp/0312078552/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1294856924&sr=1-1

The suit brought by Aaron Fricke against his school is considered a major milestone in the history of gay rights. Each year cases of young same-sex couples being discriminated against by their schools happen around the world, and when these cases are brought to court, the suit first brought by Aaron Fricke and Paul Guilbert is invariably cited by the plaintiff’s counsel.