Brian Hayen Fender, 49, of Little Rock, peacefully left this life on August 4, 2017. He was born on December 22, 1967 in Pocahontas, AR to David and Peggy Fender.
Brian was preceded in death by his father. He is survived by his partner of 25 years, Ronald G. Thompson, Jr.; mother, Peggy Waldron Fender; siblings, David D. (Theresa) Fender and Kristi (Bobby) Sorg; nieces, Hannah (Tyler) O’Donnell, Ashton Fender, and Kate Sorg; and nephew, Barkley Sorg.
Brian was a writer, photographer, and documentary film director who, since being diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) six years ago, became a fierce advocate for people living with the disease. Despite being confined to his bed, he combined his talents and connections to create Artists Lend Support, a non-profit fine art website dedicated to showcasing and promoting sales of art by people living with, and affected by, ALS. His art auctions in New York City (2015) and Los Angeles, CA (2016) raised over $120,000 for the ALS Therapy Development Institute at ALS.net, the world’s largest non-profit biotech entirely devoted to ALS research.
The family would like to express their deep appreciation for the tremendous outpouring of love, prayers, and support from family and friends both now and throughout Brian’s struggle with ALS.
A memorial service will be held at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church Memorial Garden (20900 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock, AR) on Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 2:00pm.
Donations in Brian’s memory may be made to ALS in Wonderland (website: alsinwonderland.com; mailing address: 208 Donna Drive, Little Rock, AR 72205), an organization that provides financial and supportive services to individuals living with ALS in Arkansas.
Cremation arrangements entrusted to A Natural State Funeral Service, 2620 West Main Street, Jacksonville, Arkansas, 72076. 501-982-3400.