Marcy Fraser worked as a nurse in the AIDS Ward at San Francisco General Hospital at the height of the AIDS epidemic. 

She recalls it being a painful time but also a sweet time when a community carried that burden in a way worth remembering.  She met countless humble and anonymous heroes who came to help.  

Marcy shares her stories with the National AIDS Memorial Surviving Voices oral history project, which in 2017 focused on women and HIV/AIDS. This diverse collection of videos is not limited to testimonies of HIV-positive women and the unique challenges they face, but also includes those of other women who have made significant contributions to the fight against AIDS as caregivers, nurses, doctors, scientists, advocates, and activists (“responders”).

Hear all the Women & AIDS Stories at Surviving Voices

"I remember the very first woman I took care of at San Francisco General and I will never forget her. I remember walking into her room, and she was having a seizure. And she was falling out of bed. I picked her up in my arms, and I just was like I can't believe this is happening. You know, we had sort of naively thought, and this was way back, that HIV was only going to affect certain people. But that was for me a huge wake up call, that that was not the case."

— Marcy Fraser

40 yearS 40 stories

We share the important story of AIDS --

the fear, stigma and discrimination. We share the stories of hope, courage, compassion, and love.  And, we bring to light the harsh reality that four decades later, there is no cure and the rates of infection are on the rise, particularly in communities of color.

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