LGBTQ activist who ran for Phoenix City Council seat after homophobic attack, dies at 37

Austin Head, an LGBTQ activist who championed equal rights in Phoenix, died on April 8 at his home in Hollywood, California, The Arizona Republic reports.

Head was born on Dec. 11, 1983, in Phoenix to Jo Ramsey and Bill Head and became an advocate for HIV/AIDS, LGBTQ rights, and progressive politics. is death at 37 was unexpected and the cause is unknown, according to the report.

Austin Head | Photo: Facebook

However, on Nov. 9, 2012, Head suffered a brutal attack when he was in Phoenix working as a DJ. He was assaulted by two men as he and a friend walked down Central Avenue in what was a homophobic attack, according to the report.

Head sustained injuries that left him unconscious and he was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital and later released with facial fractures and swelling. 

The hate crime inspired Head to enter local politics and just months after the attack he announced he was running for the District 4 seat on the Phoenix City Council. He did not pursue this as a career but instead moved to California to pursue acting.

Head is survived by his mother, father, stepmother, three siblings, eight nieces and nephews, and two grandmothers. Services will be held at a later date.

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