George Zelichowski, aka George Saint-George, died Oct. 29 after falling from the balcony of his rented house in India onto the pavement in the middle of the night. He was 46.
According to Indian news reports, SSG Hospital ( in Vadodara, Gujarat, where Zelichowski was taken ) sources told them he died of multiple injuries to his lungs, ribs and head.
Feast of Fun podcast co-host and producer Marc Felion relayed his death to Windy City Times.
At the time of his death, Zelichowski was living in Vadodara, Gujarat state, with mother Zofia and a stray dog he adopted last year. He had been living in India for two years at the time of his death. Zelichowski adopted his professional pseudonym, Saint-George, due to his birthday falling on All Saints Day.
While living in India, Zelichowski befriended India's openly gay Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil, who spearheaded the #FreeGayIndia campaign and many other LGBTQ activists in the country.
Zelichowski spent many years as a freelance photographer for a variety of Chicago publications, including Gab Magazine, Babble Magazine and Chicago Social. He was also an estate sales independent auctioneer and online retailer. During the early part of his career, he worked for Stuart-Rogers Photography.
He was born Nov. 1, 1969, and grew up in Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan. He graduated from Grosse Point North High School in 1987.
Zelichowski is also survived by his brother and friends in Chicago.
In addition to setting up a residence in India, he also traveled the world documenting his experiences in photos; including Thailand, Peru and the Netherlands. Zelichowski's other interest was cooking and he took inspiration from the cuisines of the various countries he visited throughout his life.
"George was probably most well known to people as nightlife photographer for over a decade in Chicago before he left to travel the world and live in India," said Felion and husband/Feast of Fun co-host Fausto FernÃ"s. "We truly admired him for his sense of adventure and closely followed his travels around the world. George ended up having a complicated relationship with India. He loved living there but was concerned with the nation's anti-LGBT sentiment. His home became a social center and refuge for gay men who didn't have a place to gather as homosexuality was recently re-criminalized in India. We will miss him very much."
"From about 1992 to 2002, George and I were the 'power couple' of Chicago's nightlife scene," said longtime friend Jayne Friedman. "Although never legally married, he and I shared many great memories together and often referred to ourselves, both in the past and the present, as husband and wife. George was a smart, fiery and passionate consort and I was saddened to hear of his recent passing in India. My heart goes out to his mother in her time of grief."
"George was such a dear friend," said stylist and DJ Eric Sean Daly. "Witty, intelligent and creative. We will all miss his travel stories and stunning photographs. This world lost a beautiful soul."
"George and I were close for over 20 years," said Greg Haus, DJ and multimedia artist/music department manager at Berlin Nightclub. "He was caring, loyal, and always supportive of me emotionally and creatively. I admired him for living life on his own terms. George was a true friend I could count on in times of crisis and joy. I will miss him terribly."
"George offered to travel with me through India in January 2015 to show me his favorite cities and sites," said producer/DJ Nevin Hersch. "He was so generous to spend a month showing me the world of India that he loved, planning all the bus, train and air travel and also making sure we had comfortable lodgings.
"We visited 11 cities, and had some incredible adventures along the way. He was a great photographer, and took me to a place across the river from Taj Majal that's not well-known. We got some amazing photos before getting kicked out by the police. He was also a great collector and trader of Indian tapestries, art and artifacts. He will be greatly missed."
To listen to Saint-George's appearance on Feast of Fun, visit feastoffun.com/podcast/2016/11/11/fof-2348a-eat-pray-gay-11-11-16/ .
A memorial service will take place in Chicago in the coming weeks. Details will be announced at a later date.