Cincinnati-born singer-songwriter Katie Reider, an out lesbian active in the LGBT community, has died from complications resulting from a two year battle with a rare facial tumour.
Reider, who has performed with such lesbian music icons as Melissa Ferrick, Michelle Malone and Catie Curtis, was just 30 years-old.
Reider was diagnosed with a myofibroblastic inflammation tumour two years ago, which eventually left her totally unable to perform.
Although recent chemotherapy treatments seemed hopeful, Reider died from a sudden brain haemorrhage early on Monday morning.
A member of OutMusic.com, Reider was a frequent performer at gay Pride celebrations and performed during her career with luminary musicians as Ferrick, Malone, Curtis, Antigone Rising, Ember Swift and Shawn Mullins.
By 2006, Reider had already garnered thousands of fans nationwide and had done national spots on ABC television, Dawson’s Creek on WB and on Lifetime Television’s Strong Medicine.
Then, at the peak of her musical career, Reider was suddenly stricken with a terrifying illness.
The young singer was diagnosed with a rare myofibroblastic inflammation tumour in her upper left jaw, which rapidly grew to eventually take away her sight in one eye, and finally, her voice.
In May, one of Reider’s fans and friends, Lauren Fernandes, launched a web site where supporters could donate $1 for a digital download of Katie’s Voice, a digital compilation of nine of Reider’s original songs.
The site, www.500kin365.org, was created to help Reider’s family pay for medical bills.
Now the money raised for the site will also help to cover Reider’s funeral arrangements.
Reider’s family recently reported that chemotherapy treatments had shrunk the singer’s tumour significantly.
In late June, an MRI revealed the tumour appeared to be 95 percent to 97 percent gone, according to Reider’s 500kin365 MySpace page.
A post from Reider on the Katie Reider Band MySpace page on June 21 showed the young singer in strong spirits after taking a vacation to her father’s house in Maine, saying the trip was “truly amazing” and she had enjoyed “some of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen.”
Reider had planned to return for another visit in August.
Sadly, the shrinkage from the chemotherapy that had so encouraged hope for a final recovery resulted in a severe haemorrhage in Reider’s brain as the tumour became dislodged.
At first doctors were able to stop the bleeding, according to Cincinnati.com, and Reider was scheduled for surgery in early August to remove the remainder of the tumour.
Bleeding in Reider’s brain began again on Sunday, however, and she died while in transport to Beth Israel Hospital in New York City.
Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
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