This month, longtime Gold Coast employee Dennis Ashby, known to many as “Rita,” passed away. The exact date and cause of death is unknown, but co-worker Eric Licht, who worked with Ashby for over 11 years at the Detroit club, told us: “Let’s just say that his body and soul were ‘out of alignment’ and his heart just couldn’t take it any longer.”
Between The Lines interviewed Ashby, a Utica native, in mid-2008 about doing drag, making the best Long Island and his dedication to working in gay bars, which he did for over 40 years.
“I’ll keep working as long as I possibly can,” he told us. “It keeps me in touch with the community and keeps me in a younger frame of mind. After all, it beats being a greeter at Meijer.”
1. Dennis Ashby at Gold Coast (Photos: Andrew Potter)
2. Dennis (center) with Gold Coast staff
3. Dennis and Nickki
Photos 3 and 4: Danielle