Randy Barnett Panel Primary Source Description


History of the NAMES project 

The NAMES project is a quilt created to memorialize those who have lost their lives due to Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS).  The AIDS Quilt, with its blocks and panels memorializing those lost to the disease, offers a glimpse of the diverse communities and individuals affected by this terrible disease. It is not as known about as it should be. It consists of thousands upon thousand of blocks which contain 8 separate panels and stretches for miles. The quilt continues to grow day by day.


Block 5505

Here depicted is the entire block I chose. Each panel has their own unique story and it was very difficult to make a decision. The panel I selected is of the late Randy Barnett from block 5505.





This is the panel made for Randy Barnett. As seen in the picture he had a passion for music. The piano to be exact. His panel has a blue background, with a hint of a faded blurred white in the center and little spots throughout. It is made of a simple cloth. There is not a border around this panel. The panel has Randy’s name across the top in yellow.


Michael and Randy


In the bottom left corner of the panel, there is a picture and under it, it states “Michael and Randy.” Michael is depicted in a brownish and black sweater. He is smiling as he has his arm around Randy who is also smiling. Randy is depicted wearing a red jacket and they both are wearing glasses. Seeing this image for the first time made me wonder who this Michael guy was. Upon further research I found out that he was the love of Randys life. His name is Michael Rogers, and he was actually Randy’s music teacher at Brooklyn College.

The piano

Randy tried teaching in New York City public schools but his heart was in his music. He loved to make music and also go to the opera. He played in off- Broadway musicals and cruise ship revues until his back problems forced him to quit. His love for music never faded.




Over the letter “R” is his name is a shooting star in the top left corner. Below his name is a big and slightly diagonal music note, a sixteenth note to be exact. The words “a life of music, books, and laughter” goes across the center of the panel. There appears to be a picture of Randy playing a piano above the piano on the right side of the panel. There is a picture of “Michael and Randy” in the bottom left corner of the panel. Around each picture in the panel is a gold border or frame. There was a letter that came with this panel separately.

The letter

This is the letter that was sent in with the panel.

This letter was sent in by Randy’s cousin. She gave very detailed insight into his life and clarified thoughts that one might have.





The letter “E”


Upon further research, I found out that Randy’s middle name starts with an “E”.

I have been trying to find more on his middle name, hopefully results will come soon.