Brian Coyle was born in 1944 and was raised in Moorhead, Minnesota. He attended the University of Minnesota-Minneapolis and went on to teach at Moorhead State University from 1967-1968. During his time teaching he was arrested for failure to comply with the United States Draft and was eventually acquitted as a conscientious objector. In 1969 he returned to Minneapolis and publicly came out as a gay man in 1971. Coyle was a lifelong gay rights activist and an anti-war activist. During the Vietnam war he led many groups of activists who were opposed to the war. After the war he cemented his reputation as a progressive by fighting for tenant’s rights and by fighting against the building of the Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis. Brian Coyle was diagnosed as HIV-Positive in 1986 and publicly announced his illness in April 1991. He died of AIDS-related complications in August 1991.