Gilbert Baker, the artist best known for creating the rainbow flag used to represent gay rights, has died at the age of 65.
My dearest friend in the world is gone. Gilbert Baker gave the world the Rainbow Flag; he gave me forty years of love and friendship. pic.twitter.com/titd3XZ0zD— Cleve Jones (@CleveJones1) March 31, 2017
Jones also tweeted a photo of Baker with former President Barack Obama, inviting mourners to meet him under a rainbow flag in the Castro district of San Francisco on Friday evening to remember his friend.
Baker, who was born in Kansas in 1951, was stationed in San Francisco in the early 1970s while serving in the US Army, at the start of the gay rights movement.
There he began making banners for gay rights and anti-war protests, often at the request of Harvey Milk, who would become the first openly gay man elected to public office in California when he won the 1977 race for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
The original flag had eight colours: pink to represent sexuality; red for life; orange for healing; yellow for sunlight; green for nature; turquoise for art; indigo for harmony; and violet for the human spirit.
It was later reduced to six colours as pink and indigo were removed.