Michelle McCausland (Michael Shreves)

Michelle McCausland (Michael Shreves) died of COVID-19 on November 28, 2020 at the age of 61.

Performing was her life’s true passion, and Michelle was truly a St. Louis entertainment and LGBTQ+ institution. She never made it to Broadway like the fantasies of her youth, instead she created magic and shined bright in St. Louis. Michelle supported friends and strangers alike in their struggles, a trusted and respected pillar of empathy and strength. She loved her fans and community and they loved her back.

In 1986 Michelle successfully sued (via the ACLU) and overturned the St. Louis City’s 150 year old masquerade law (prohibiting drag and crossdressing), which got declared unconstitutional. Her “offense” had been getting arrested at a Washington Avenue bar for cross dressing in 1982. 30 years later in 2012, and after years of being runner-up, Michelle finally achieved her dream of earning the title “Miss Gay Missouri” for her version of the Broadway hit “Anything Goes” (complete with backup dancers and professional choreography).

Michelle McCausland/Michael Shreves is missed by her mother, relatives, huge family of friends, the St. Louis’s LGBTQ+ community, and by all her thousands of fans and supporters.

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As word got at the end of the Thanksgiving 2020 weekend, tributes more eloquent than this writing were posted to news outlets and social media.

Lamont Hadley Sr.

Lamont Hadley Senior died of COVID-19 on August 21, 2020. He was in his 60s. St. Louis lost an inspiration, treasured voice, and musical legend who still had songs left to sing.

Lamont had been singing since he was in grade-school, and his innate natural talent only blossomed more as he hit his musical stride in the 1980s and 90s, especially after joining the all-male vocal group Master’s Touch. Hadley was still singing and performing until the night before he went to the hospital. Music was truly his passion, and others have written much better and more in depth about Lamont Hadley’s life and many accomplishments. Lamont’s girlfriend of 32 years, Bridgette West, was undoubtedly his other great love. He bonded over music with his son, Lamont Hadley Jr., and took lots of pride in being a great dad.

According to the St. Louis American:

Lamont Jr. was with his dad the night he almost collapsed while performing at a Master’s Touch reunion concert. 

“During the last three songs, he got very weak and had trouble breathing,” Lamont Jr. “I had to bring a stool up on stage for him to sit down.” 

The next day, Hadley was taken to the hospital, where he was initially diagnosed with pneumonia. A few days later, Lamont Jr., said doctors informed the family that his father had indeed contracted the dreaded virus. 

Although Hadley’s condition continually worsened, West said that she and his family were unprepared for his demise. Since Hadley’s mother and sister had also contracted the virus and survived, they expected a similar outcome.

Sadly, Hadley slipped into a coma and passed on August 21.  

Lamont Hadley Sr. is missed not only by his girlfriend, son, family, and friends, but by countless fans and coworkers and everyone whose life he touched while he was on this earth. Undoubtedly, others will discover his music now and in the future, and wish that they had the pleasure of seeing him perform while he was alive and wish he’d lived longer to make more music.

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