Tom Matthews died aged 74. He was one of the longest 'AIDS' survivors after being diagnosed in 1986.

Renowned, respected Birmingham AIDS campaigner and co-founder of the National Long Term Survivors Group (NLTSG) was one of the first men in Britian to be diagnosed with the disease.

He had been suffering from a medical condition unrelated to his HIV+ status since summer last year.

When Tom was diagnosed with the disease, close to four decades ago, there was no known treatment.

He witnessed many friends succumb to the illness.

Miraculously, Tom survived. He is thought to have been the oldest person in the country to have successfully tamed AIDS and continue to lead a normal, healthy life living with HIV.

An Aids and HIV memorial has been unveiled in Birmingham to remember those who have died from the virus.

The new public sculpture in Hippodrome Square, depicts two interlocking heart-shaped ribbons. It was designed by Garry Jones and is accompanied by quilts made by hand, showing the history of the condition and those who have died.

One of which is in memory to Tom Matthews, an Aids campaigner who lived with HIV and who helped source funds for a range of projects in the West Midlands.

His partner, said they were together for nearly 35 years but initially thought they would only have two years together.


"He was the most wonderful person. He was just amazing, there was something really inspiring about him,"

"He may have gone, but his legacy will be remembered and carried forward.”

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