James Stone, who was married to Jay Hoskins, passed away on Jan. 19 in Conroe, Texas.
Stone, who reportedly died at age 32 from Sjogren’s syndrome, was originally from Clarkridge, Arkansas, but a church in that area refused to perform a funeral service because Stone was gay, notes the Dallas Voice.
According to an obituary notice on Legacy.com, a public memorial service was held on Jan. 31 at Thacker Cemetery, which is near Clarkridge.
Hoskins clarified and disputed some of the reporting in the comments section of the Dallas Voice:
"I can tell you that there were not only issues having a service for him, but also in so much as that one or more members of the Clarkridge Church of Christ called and 'CANCELLED' our family get-together after the service, and that TWO members of the Clarkridge Church of Christ ... gave James grieving mother, myself and the preacher a nice big envelope each one filled with over 10 pages of Bible passages condemning us to hell, referencing God's marriage laws, marriage amongst people and animals, and then a sympathy card."
"I HAVE NEVER EXPERIENCED SUCH HATE AND BIGOTRY in my life. James was taught not to be bigoted, hateful, and would not have approved of this. James did not die of Sjogren's Syndrome. He died a tragic death of suicide where his poor mother and myself found him hanging from a ceiling fan. I tried unsuccessfully to revive him, but it was too late."