People are being asked to donate to the Vernita Gray LGBT Youth Fund, which makes yearly grants to grassroots non-profit organizations that provide services to youth.
Those who donate will receive a "Marching with Vernita" button, complete with a photo of the late activist.
Gray, a lesbian activist who was a native Chicagoan, died in 2014 at age 65. Gray and wife Pat Ewert were the first same-sex couple married legally in Illinoison Nov. 27, 2013after winning a court victory because of Gray's critical health situation. That paved the way for additional court rulings that hastened marriage in Illinois ahead of the original June 1, 2014, implementation of full marriage equality in the state.
Among other accomplishments, Gray worked in the Cook County state's attorney's office for 18 years, including in the position of victim/witness assistant, where she helped LGBT crime survivors, and as an outreach worker on LGBT issues.
See crossroadsfund.org/vernitagray .