“When they said ‘No justice, no peace’ they meant it,” Craft’s lawyer Paul Jubas posted online when announcing their death on Tue., Nov. 2. “Nique was a profound lightning rod, during one of the most profound summers in any of our lives.”
As first reported by WESA, Craft, also known by close friends as Gam, was found dead inside their home, and the cause of death is still under investigation.
Their death this week was followed by an outpouring of grief on social media, including an emotional Instagram video posted by clinical therapist and anti-racism advocate Liana Maneese. In the video, Maneese says Craft was adopted, which Maneese says was “one of the most important" things about her friend. Maneese says Craft led an “excruciating” life.
Pittsburgh writer and adoptive mother Meg St-Esprit McKivigan, who is white, posted that Craft helped her become a better mother to her adopted Black children.
“Nique Craft has taught me more than any book or blog. They’ve cuddled my babies, talked to them about transracial adoption before they even had the words to verbalize their loss, and had some tough as hell convos with me that shaped my entire existence,” wrote St-Esprit McKivigan on Facebook. “I wouldn’t be 1/10th of the mother I am without you."
At Friday night’s memorial, organized by Craft's close friend and fellow activist Toy Slaughter, Craft’s friends repeated a chant often heard during protests during the summer of 2020:
“Gam was a freedom fighter and they taught us how to fight.”