CHICAGO — Earlier this year, the Leather community lost the beloved and respected Daddy Orchid (Drea). Daddy Orchid was a scholar, teacher, published author, and community patron whose quiet support and keen wisdom has at various times undergirded the lives and work of individuals and groups in the many outposts of the Leather world that she touched.
Though she split her time amongst several places, a powerful sense of personal vocation encouraged her to be of service to Leatherfolk wherever she went and to make a positive impact no matter the length of her tenure in a place. Among her contributions were serving as a board member of the LRA, vice-president of RACK at U of C, active member of Chicago Leather Association of Women (CLAW), supporter of RAD Remedy and IMsBB. She also played a vital role in bringing the Carter-Johnson Leather Library to Chicago in 2011. Though a Butch herself, Daddy Orchid was a tireless advocate for Leather Femmes and Femme visibility within Leather communities. Daddy Orchid believed in community outreach and improvement through education, having taught in the U.S. and Canada at LRA, An Unholy Harvest, and Queering Power. She attended the MTTA Academy in 2009.
A published author, a selection of her titles include: “Her Gardener’s Boy”, in Me and My Boi: Queer Erotic Stories (edited by Sacchi Green) , “The Office Hustler” in Love Me Tender: Romantic Tales of Pleasure and Pain (edited by Mira Paul) plus a wide selection of fanfic. Most importantly, though, Daddy Orchid was a genuinely good and generous soul who encouraged people to accept themselves as they are, to live authentically, and love from a place of abundance. An exceptional human being in many ways, her greatest success was that in her brief sojourn on this planet she left the world and those who had the privilege of entering her orbit better than she found them.
She is survived by her Leather Family – Jess and Liz of Toronto, Belladona and Wicked Enigma of Chicago, and Reg of Madison.
“To health and happiness! May we love ourselves enough to strive for it without hating ourselves for not always reaching it, and may we love freedom enough to let others do the same!” ~D. Orchid