Andelson, Sheldon W
7 Apr 1988
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07 Apr 1988
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Charles Straub
Laguna Beach
27 Aug 2017
Mr. Sheldon Andelson resolved a court case for me back in 1969. ( I was 25 at the time.) The City of Los Angeles arrested me for kissing another man in a gay bathhouse. Locked me up in Los Angeles County Jail over night. Bail was set and my father picked me up in the morning. My parents and myself met Sheldon in his office a day or two later. I explained the circumstances to Sheldon, it was nothing more than an embrace and a kiss in a private, members only club for men. The door was broken in by the police without a warrant or just cause. Sheldon said not to be concerned, that he would speak privately to the judge and I would not have to appear in court. After Sheldon spoke to the judge, the charges were dropped. Over the course of the next two years I referred two friends on two different occasions to Mr. Andelson. Sheldon was again able to resolve the cases most efficiently. Truly a remarkable and gifted man. I hold him in my memory with the kindest of regards.
John Mehring
San Francisco
25 May 2013
Sheldon Andelson's life is included in the book, Out for Good; The Struggle to Build a Gay Rights Movement in America (1999), by Dudley Clendinen and Adam Nagourney. They describe Andelson's focus on economic success and political power. Andelson was a millionaire attorney and businessman (real estate, a restaurant and the Bank of Los Angeles). He raised money for Democratic Party candidates at his Bel Air mansion and he was rewarded with a seat on the University of California Board of Regents (appointed by Jerry Brown). He also owned the most popular bathhouse in Los Angeles, the 8709, at 8709 West 3rd Street. It was financially lucrative; nevertheless, he closed the bathhouse in May 1995 to avoid the connection being outed by the press (a KCBS expose was in the works) during the height of public scrutiny of bathhouses. And until the end of his life, Andelson denied he had AIDS. According to the book, Andelson informed writer Paul Monette (Andelson's half brother, Roger Horwitz, was Monette's lover, and Horwitz was dying of AIDS) that his powerful friends in government and medicine had assured him a cure was imminent. (It's really nothing serious and it'll be over in a couple of years, Andelson said.)
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