Rochester, N.Y. and Bar Harbor
El Belden passed away peacefully Monday morning, May 20, 2019, in Rochester, N.Y., at the age of 28. El is survived by their mother and stepfather, Sallie Wilmot and David Avery; their siblings, Clare and Brendan Belden; and islands of people that loved them.
El was born on June 27, 1990, in Rochester. In the fall of 2008, El began attending College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, where they would live for the next nine years. There they found their true selves as well as their surrogate family, with whom they would be forever bonded. Throughout this time, El would travel the country and the world experiencing so many great things and even greater people. Living and loving more than most could even dream. Affectionately known as “Bells” by their friends, they were a lover of Bruce Springsteen and their purrrfect cat, Dexter. They tried each day to make the world a safer, more understanding place for Queers. They loved with a compassion that consumed and healed all their heart came in contact with. Their contagious, endless laughter echoes on with that love and the joy we all felt around them. They will be missed beyond words but we will carry them forever in our hearts. We love you, El.
A celebration in honor and memory will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 16, at the Neighborhood House in Northeast Harbor. All are invited to share stories, memories, songs and time. In lieu of flowers or prayers, donations to Bar Harbor Pride will be accepted at the celebration. Some of El’s favorite snacks and beverages will be provided. In honor of how El moved in the world, this is a sober event.