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Public Tribute In NYC Nov. 2, LOGO Plans ‘RPDR’ Marathon Featuring Drag Star
By Nathan James
Sahara Davenport, the drag actor whose sudden death rocked the LGBT community, likely fell victim to heart failure, sources close to the performer said yesterday.
Davenport, 27, was a featured personality on the LOGO series RuPaul’s Drag Race, a Glammy Awards recipient as Best Dance performer in 2008, and appeared on other TV programs, such as One Life To Live.
The actor was born as Antoine Ashley in Dallas, Texas, and quickly rose to fame as the sassy, tongue-in-cheek Davenport in New York, gaining a widespread following.
A spokesperson for Johns-Hopkins Hospital in Maryland, where Davenport was admitted, declined to comment further on the cause of death, but did confirm that the Billboard chart-topper had been a patient there.
The LOGO network issued a statement describing their “heartfelt condolences”, and the network was planning an October 22 marathon presentation of Davenport’s first season on Drag Race. RuPaul said he was “shocked and heartbroken” at the star’s passing.
While Davenport’s funeral service later this month is private, there will be a public memorial tribute, featuring many LGBT notables, and Sahara’s fellow drag queens, at the XL nightclub in New York City on November 2.
Davenport is survived by his mother, Angela Ashley Reddish, and boyfriend Karl Westerberg, who also appeared on RPDR as Manila Luzon.