Marlin Criddle, Oct. 19, 1946–March 12, 2023
Marlin Glenn Criddle, born Oct 19, 1946, in Honolulu, Hawaii, died March 12, 2023, in Seattle, Washington. He was the son of Charles Glenn Criddle and Zella Luella Frandsen and the eldest of five siblings.
The gay community of Salt Lake owes a debt of gratitude to this pioneering son of pioneers.
He won the testimony of the year award from friends for coming out during a testimony meeting in his UCLA student ward. He completed a master’s degree in Linguistics and later a J.D. in Law at Loyola of Los Angeles.
After the death of his partner, Dennis Akazawa, Marlin came to Salt Lake to pursue a passion for genealogy. He met David Turner, his husband, at a protest at Salt Lake City Hall. It seems the Utah Eagle Forum objected to the mention of gay victims in the Anne Frank Holocaust exhibit.
Discovering the drive of the gay community, he decided he could stay in Salt Lake. He opened a law practice serving mostly clients with HIV. Many were never able to pay. He received the Kristen Ries Community Service Award and was one of the first openly gay attorneys to speak out.
He became board president of the Utah Stonewall Center, which is now the Utah Pride Center. He often spent nights on the phone pleading for the building rent.
A highlight of his time in Salt Lake includes singing with Salt Lake Men’s Choir, the Tuesday Night Movie Group, the Wednesday Men’s Sack Lunch, and dinner with Craig and Ernie while telling David to stop cheating at cards.
David knew he could love Marlin when, early in their relationship, Marlin clipped a car while parking at the bar. He insisted on putting his name and number on the car because he always tried to do the right thing.
Claiming he wanted a Viking funeral, Marlin’s cremains will be taken by ferry to the waters of Puget Sound. David regrets he will be unable to set the ferry on fire.
A donation to the Utah Pride Center or the Chamber Music Society of Salt Lake City are offered up as potential donations in Marlin’s name.