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Liara Tsai Remembered for Her Life of Love, Music, and Advocacy

Liara Tsai, a 35-year-old transgender woman, was a DJ, crisis counselor, and Trevor Project volunteer, remembered for her authenticity and compassion. She was tragically killed, allegedly by her ex-partner Margot Lewis, who faces murder charges. Friends and colleagues honor Tsai's vibrant life and dedication to the LGBTQ+ community. Memorials are planned to celebrate her impactful legacy, emphasizing her fearless and uplifting spirit.

The transgender community and allies in Minneapolis and beyond are mourning the loss of Liara Tsai, a beloved 35-year-old transgender woman whose life was tragically cut short last week. Tsai, who had recently relocated from Iowa to Minneapolis, was a talented DJ, music producer, crisis counselor, and dedicated volunteer for the Trevor Project and Suicide Hotline. She was found dead in the backseat of a crashed car in southern Minnesota, and her former partner, Margot Lewis, has been charged with second-degree murder in connection with her death.

A Life of Passion and Purpose

Friends of Tsai are choosing to remember her not by the horrific way she died, but by the vibrant and impactful way she lived. Olivia Anderson, a friend and former partner, shared, “I cannot express enough her capacity for love. She was just always completely herself, and she wanted to inspire everyone around her to always be their most true and authentic selves.”

Tsai’s life was filled with music and compassion. She was a DJ whose career was blossoming, with a major gig in New York lined up just days after her death. Levi Lake, another friend, reflected on her contributions to the community, saying, “She was so connected with her humanity, her divinity, and her love. I really grieve that she won’t be here to experience that.”

Commitment to Community and Advocacy

Tsai’s dedication to helping others extended beyond her music career. She served as a crisis counselor and volunteered for the Trevor Project and Suicide Hotline, where her empathetic nature and remarkable ability to connect with LGBTQ+ youth saved countless lives. The Trevor Project honored her on their LinkedIn page, stating, “Liara was a valued member of our 988 Crisis Intervention team and part of our Trevor community. She is remembered for her empowering gentleness and remarkable ability to center the feelings and experiences of LGBTQ+ young people.”

Friends and colleagues describe Tsai as fearless and authentic, qualities that made her a magnetic personality. Jaycee Cooper, who met Tsai at one of her performances, said, “She was one of those people that made you feel welcome and seen. More than anything, she was really a connector and a support.”

Dana Kazuko, a fellow DJ and friend, echoed these sentiments, saying, “Liara was just this incredible artist who would come to my shows and listen to my mixes and give me feedback. There was no jealousy. She was always very uplifting.”

A Shocking and Tragic End

Tsai’s body was discovered in the backseat of her car after it crashed into a guardrail on Interstate 90 in Olmsted County, Minnesota. The driver, her ex-partner Margot Lewis, was found sitting in a lawn chair in the median. Deputies determined that Tsai had not died in the crash but had suffered a puncture wound to her neck. Authorities found her wrapped in bedding and a tarp, with additional signs of violence, at her apartment in Minneapolis.

Lewis, who had traveled from Iowa to visit Tsai, has been charged with two counts of second-degree murder and felony interference with a dead body or scene of death. She is currently being held on a $1 million bond.

An Outpouring of Grief and Support

News of Tsai’s death has sent waves of grief through her community. OutFront Minnesota, an LGBTQ advocacy organization, shared a statement about Tsai, saying, “We mourn her loss and urge a full investigation of her death. We extend our deepest sympathies to those closest to her and to all who found connection through her music.”

Friends are organizing multiple memorials to honor Tsai’s life and legacy. Anderson shared, “If you met Liara, it’s an experience you will remember and hold with you for the rest of your life. She had a huge impact on my life and who I am.”

Remembering Liara Tsai

Liara Tsai was a combat veteran, a spoken-word artist, a crisis counselor, and, above all, a beloved member of the transgender community. Her life was a testament to the power of authenticity, love, and resilience. As friends and family gather to remember her, they emphasize the importance of continuing her legacy of support, advocacy, and fearless self-expression.

Mega Solga, a close friend, said, “She was the most fearless person I’ve ever met. She knew exactly who she was, especially as a trans woman. She had no fear showing the world who she was.”

Tsai’s story serves as a powerful reminder of the beauty and strength within the transgender community. Her life, though tragically cut short, continues to inspire those who knew her and those who hear her story.

Support for Those Affected

The Trevor Project and other organizations are providing assistance to those who have suffered because of Tsai’s passing and the ongoing violence against transgender people. The constant news of transphobic violence can be overwhelming, but the community is encouraged to reach out for help and support.

For those in need, the National Dating Abuse Helpline is available in the U.S. at 1-866-331-9474 or via text at “loveis” to 22522.

As we remember Liara Tsai, let us honor her by continuing to fight for a world where everyone can live their truth without fear. Her legacy of love, music, and advocacy will live on in the hearts of those she touched and the lives she saved.

Transvitae Staff
Transvitae Staff
Staff Members of Transvitae here to assist you on your journey, wherever it leads you.


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