Sharon Stone became emotional while speaking at the AIDS Monument Groundbreaking in West Hollywood.
The 63-year-old star was among the celebrities, guests and speakers who attended the event, which took place Saturday at the West Hollywood Park.
‘And while we are here in our little neck of the woods creating this memorial,’ Stone said.
A dedicated advocate: Sharon Stone became emotional while speaking at the AIDS Monument Groundbreaking in West Hollywood
‘This is a global moment. While we stood here fighting hand in hand,’ she continued, before pausing to take a deep breath.
’44 million people died on our watch,’ Sharon finished, while visibly tearing up.
The event organizers chose June 5 as the date for the groundbreaking to mark the 40th year since the first documented cases of HIV/AIDS were reported by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.
Stone is a passionate advocate for AIDS research. For 20 years, she has served the Global Chair for the American Foundation for AIDS Research(amFAR). The organization’s website has a dedicated page to highlight her work.
A section of the page reads, ‘Since accepting a key volunteer position with amfAR, Ms. Stone has traveled widely on behalf of the Foundation. At each of her many public appearances, she has worked tirelessly to heighten awareness of HIV/AIDS as a threat to social and economic stability and to underscore the urgent need for continued AIDS research.
‘One of her main concerns is the growing HIV infection rate among adolescents and young people. Ms. Stone’s willingness to speak out on sometimes controversial topics, such as making condoms available to teenagers and teaching the practice of safer sex, makes her one of amfAR’s most effective spokespeople.’
Solidarity: Stone also posed with U.S. congresswoman Maxine Waters(D-CA) who is an advocate for the care and rights of people diagnosed with HIV/AIDS and Jeanne White-Ginder, the mother of Ryan White, a teenager who died of AIDs in 1990
amFar’s page went on to praise Sharon for the contributions she has made to the foundation’s fundraising efforts. ‘Since first chairing amfAR’s Cinema Against AIDS event during the Cannes Film Festival in 1998, her dynamic presence and captivating skills as an auctioneer have been the indispensable elements in a numerous highly successful amfAR benefits.
‘At the 2014 Cinema Against AIDS event, she helped raise a record $35 million in a single evening.’
The website also noted that Sharon has received numerous prestigious awards and accolades for her work in the fight to end AIDS.
Ready to break ground: At the event, the Basic Instinct actress donned a hard hat and held a shovel as she posed for a photo with Irwin Rappaport, Phill Wilson and Jeanne White-Ginder
At the event, the Basic Instinct actress donned a hard hat and held a shovel as she posed for a photo with Irwin Rappaport, Phill Wilson and Jeanne White-Ginder.
Rappaport is a retired entertainment attorney and the Chairman of the Board of Directors for The Foundation for the AIDS Monument.
A prominent AIDS activist, Wilson founded the Black AIDS Institute in 1999 after his partner died of an HIV-related illness.
White-Ginder is the mother of Ryan White, who contracted HIV from a contaminated blood transfusion. The 13-year-old was later banned from returning to his school. He became the national poster child for the HIV/AIDS epidemic as well as an activist who fought to end the stigma around HIV/AIDS before his death in 1990.
Dedication: Stone is a passionate advocate for AIDS research
Taking action: For 20 years, she has served the Global Chair for the American Foundation for AIDS Research(amFAR). The organization’s website has a dedicated page to highlight her work
Honoring her work: amFar’s page praised Sharon for the contributions she has made to the foundation’s fundraising efforts. Pictured here with Rogerio Carvalheiro, an architect of the monument
The Oscar winner also posed with U.S. congresswoman Maxine Waters(D-CA) who is an outspoken advocate for the care and rights of people diagnosed with HIV/AIDS.
Billy Porter, Whoopi Goldberg, Wilson Cruz, Cheyenne Jackson, Richard Gere and Sterling K. Brown participated in readings for an audio component on the memorial’s website called ‘Hear Our Stories.’
The readings told the stories of several people who died of AIDS which were shared on the AIDS Memorial Instagram page.
Tragic: At the event, Sharon said, ‘While we stood here fighting hand in hand, 44 million people died on our watch’
The monument, which is officially titled Stories: The AIDS Monument will be located next to the West Hollywood Park on San Vicente Boulevard. The $5 million 7,000 square foot installation is set to open in 2022.
Ahead of the event, the Casino actress recorded a video at home in which she thanked those who had joined her in the fight against AIDS.
Sharon said, ‘As I go, I want you to know how much I’m thinking of all of you who stayed with me, with us, with all of us AIDS workers as we have battled and really have been winning finally, this battle against HIV/AIDS.’
Grateful: Ahead of the event, Sharon recorded a video at home in which she thanked those who had joined her in the fight against AIDS