Ann Summa (photographer): I remember attending a rather staid dinner in L.A. several years ago for Details magazine. Suddenly Lance roared up outside on his motorcycle, marched in wearing his leathers and practically climbed up on the table and entertained everyone the rest of the night.
Over the past year we talked a lot about spirituality, and he wanted to achieve some kind of peace with dying, but at the same time he resisted it. He went to Self-Realization Fellowship with me a few times, and he seemed to like it, but then one day he turned to me and said, "I don't want to study Self-Realization because I don't want to end up a fat Indian." He was referring, of course, to my guru, Yogananda! Maybe it was a result of the artificial fame thrust on him by An American Family, but he often said that he'd wasted his life and hadn't achieved anything materially. He never understood how much we all loved him, and that it didn't matter what he achieved, because he was his greatest artwork.
Bill Loud (father): Lance could always charm the birds out of the trees, but he was an unusual kid. He didn't want to do sports and was in love with his stuffed animals. When he was 11, I took him on a trip to Canada and he still had his stuffed animals and his favorite blanket with him. When he was 10, we moved from Eugene, Oregon, to Santa Barbara, and just before we left he was in a school play where he played a sacrificial Aztec victim. They had a big papier-mâché volcano, and he came out in a thong and jumped into it. He was so proud of that performance. Things got hard for Lance after we got to Santa Barbara, and he became the object of a lot of derision at school. A well-known actor lived behind us, and Lance confided to him that he was gay, and the actor went to school and told everyone "Lance is a fag." I was so dumb I didn't know what was going on, because he didn't confide in me. Now I can see there was a spiritual hunger in Lance that I didn't recognize and respond to when he was growing up, and I feel great remorse for the ways I failed him. Shortly before he died he gave me the Frank Sinatra CD, Fly Me to the Moon, and he wrote on it, "When I fly I'm going to fly alone, and I can't take you with me, but I'll be thinking of you. Love, Lance."