A mural of Cal Anderson was unveiled Saturday on the wall for the Sound Transit light rail construction — expected completion date, 2016. Saturday, nearly fifteen years since his passing, Anderson’s life was celebrated by the addition of his portrait by West Seattle artist Kelly Lyles to the temporary construction wall.
Anderson was appointed to King County Council in 1987, making him Washington’s first gay legislator. He went on to become a senator in the Washington Senate in 1995. Less than a year later, Anderson passed away from an AIDS related illness. In 2003 Seattle’s Lincoln Park was renamed Cal Anderson Park in Anderson’s honor.
Saturday, the Rainbow City Marching Band played and Cupcake Royale catered some rainbow-themed cupcake treats. Family members including Anderson’s mother Alice Coleman, brother Joe Anderson, and Eric Ishino (Anderson’s partner of ten years), as well artist Lyles, Senator Ed Murray, King County Council’s Joe McDermott and Washington State Representative Jamie Pedersen, his partner Eric Pedersen and their four sons, were in attendance.
The Cal Anderson mural is now part of the wall in the northwest corner of the park. It’s a little early — but not too early — to start wondering how it might become a permanent part of the park that bears his name.