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Asteroid named for Frank Kameny

July 10, 2012

An asteroid discovered by a Canadian astronomer has been named after pioneering gay rights activist Frank Kameny. He died last year at the age of 86.

Kameny, a founding board member of the Task Force, was an astronomer with the U.S. Army Map Service in the 1950s. He was fired from his job for being gay and contested the firing to the U.S. Supreme Court. He also led the first gay rights protests outside the White House.

According to the Associated Press, astronomer Gary Billings submitted a citation to the International Astronomical Union and the Minor Planet Center seeking to designate Minor Planet 40463 as “Frankkameny.” It’s in the asteroid belt, between Mars and Jupiter. Read more here.

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