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bob bowers tattoos hiv aids survivors


Bob Bowers One Tough Pirate Website Logo

Bob Bowers is a youth HIV/AIDS educator, activist, and a 39 year long-term survivor of HIV/AIDS

“If there was such a thing as a force of destiny in our lives, I would say that Bob Bowers was born for this role; no one has carried this difficult mantle with more dignity, conviction, purpose, and compassion.”

Madeleine Schwab – Crossroads High School – Santa Monica, California

Bob Bowers was by far one of the most amazing speakers I have ever heard in my life. No words can describe the respect I have for him, and how much I look up to him. My sister went to Africa and worked in an orphanage. When she arrived back home again, and I heard her stories of interacting with kids who have been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS, I wanted to go back or do something to help so badly. Now that I have heard Mr. Bowers speak, and heard his stories, that urge is even worse. I want to do as much as I can to help. I can guarantee that I will go home tonight after school and the first thing I will do is visit his website and find out what I can do to help. It amazes me how high his spirits are in times like these and his perseverance and his hopefulness. I especially like how he is willing to share his story with people like me and inform us so that we become aware. I learned many things from Bob.

~Jennifer B.

I must say your story is so powerful I have never know anyone with HIV... I think you are a blessing to this world... God bless your voice and your image because like I said it is so powerful, I must admit I clicked on your page because I was like wow he is cute. Then when I hit your website it really hit home for me because I would never have assumed that you were HIV positive and then I read how you attained the disease and thought what if that was me. It was one of those Wow moments..
Thank you for that moment.
~ Megan

Dear. Bob Bowers.

I just want you to know that i am not affected by hiv/aids and don't know anyone who is. But this website is the most amazing one i have ever seen. What you do is just keep on living and doing what you do. Inspire as many as you they can carry on your legacy. Your family should be so proud of you. 

~ Adria

Hi Pirate,

I have been to your site and was just amazed. I saw this man who could of taken HIV and let it ruin his life. Instead you have become a role model and a spokesperson to bring awareness to everyone. I think that takes a lot of courage. You didn't let HIV beat you. You are kicking it's ass instead. I truly admire the work you do. Keep on kicking ass. Thanks again!



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Bob Bowers on social media.

I'd like to extend my sincere and heartfelt thanks for your compassion, love, and support. Welcome to my personal website! I sincerely hope that you enjoy your time spent here. This site pays homage to hope, survival and to the over 40 million of our courageous brothers and sisters that were taken from us far too early in life. I truly believe that where there is a will, there is a way. I have survived living with HIV/AIDS for four decades, and I have dedicated my life to educating and empowering youth and others about this dreadful scourge. I am truly blessed and grateful to be alive. I despise the stigma that continues to drive this disease. Through my advocacy and activism, I work diligently to address the core issues of poverty, racism, homophobia, women's rights, domestic violence, homelessness, addiction etc. Regardless of HIV/AIDS, it is vital that we not turn on backs on those who need our love and support. In 2006 I created our youth AIDS awareness poster contest, to pose the simple and profound question, "What if it Were You?" I fight equally to be a voice of hope, knowing that we all have obstacles to overcome. I've come to realize that good, bad or ugly, life is truly a blessing. Throughout these many years of being a long-term survivor, an activist, and through my advocacy as a youth educator, I have had the privilege and honor to speak to countless thousands of students, and adults alike, about life, and living life with this virus - neither of which are easy. Without a doubt, education and awareness remain vital in helping to stop the spread of HIV. I hope that through my speaking, or in my day to day interactions, that I've helped empower others to live life to the fullest, as you have helped me! I give endless thanks and praise to you, my family, friends and those individuals who have blessed my voyage to this point in life. I say without a doubt, "I did not get here alone!" Your involvement in my life and/or words of love and encouragement, are forever embedded in my heart, soul, mission, and on the many pages throughout this website! Once again, welcome. Compassion is our cure!

Bob Bowers
Aka - One Tough Pirate
Now This News.png

HIV/AIDS long-term survivor Bob Bowers speaking on stigma for Now This News for World AIDS Day 2022

"Long-Term Survivors are defined as having a HIV/AIDS diagnosis before 1996. They share those earliest and darkest years of the epidemic when there were no effective treatments. Effective treatments were available in 1995-96. Protease inhibitors transformed HIV infection from a “death sentence” to a more chronic but manageable condition."

bob bowers one tough pirate long-term hiv aids survivor
The Fire Within Documentary long term HIV AIDS survivor Bob Bowers

Gritty, raw and very real, The Fire Within is a compelling feature-length documentary chronicling a year in the life of long-term AIDS survivor Bob Bowers.

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