February 5, 2023
A&E

Remembering the life of Leslie Jordan, gay luminaire

Photo taken by Miller Mobley, retrieved from @thelesliejordan on Instagram.

Leslie Jordan, an actor, writer, singer and comedian, passed away on Oct. 24, 2022 at the age of 67 after being involved in a car accident in Los Angeles.

Although Leslie Jordan was just  4’11 in height, his charming southern drawl, incomparable wit and remarkable kindness had an immense effect, leaving behind a magnificent legacy.

In his book “My Trip Down the Pink Carpet,” published in 2009, Jordan detailed his migration from Tennessee to Hollywood in 1982. 

“Honey, I got on a bus in 1982 with $1,200 that Mama pinned in my underpants and I took a Greyhound to Hollywood,” Jordan told Entertainment Weekly in a 2020 interview.

On “Will & Grace,” he played the recurring character of Karen’s sexually ambiguous friend Beverley Leslie, which made him a popular favorite among viewers. In addition, Jordan can be recognized for his roles in “American Horror Story,” “The Cool Kids,” “Call Me Kat” and “Hearts Afire.”

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, when his social media presence on Instagram took off and garnered him millions of followers, Jordan’s fame blazed even hotter than it had been for decades. Through his dazzling humor, Jordan recounted not only his own challenges but also his recollections and anecdotes from his family, many of which were about his cherished mother. 

“I fell out of the womb and into my mother’s high heels,” Jordan said in a viral TikTok. 

The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics’ Timeless Star award, the organization’s career achievement award granted to “an actor or performer whose exemplary career is marked by character, wisdom and wit,” was awarded to Jordan in 2021. 

In order to avoid being bullied as a child, Jordan became skilled at making other people laugh. Jordan’s ability to make others laugh has not only helped him avoid violence, but it has also given him a fresh perspective on life thanks to his TikTok stardom. 

The most significant aspect to take away from Jordan’s life, however, is not his sharp wit or hilarious observations; rather, it is his overwhelming sense of gratitude for the opportunities he had, even though he has worked his whole life toward achieving them.

Fans believe Jordan was an unprecedented talent, providing many with comedy during unsightly times. His death can serve as a reminder to always “do for others,” and live life with kindness in mind. 

“I honor the sanctity of all religions,” Jordan said in a 2008 interview with Today. “But the only religion that I personally embrace is the religion of kindness.”

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