Negativland’s Richard Lyons Dies

Richard Lyons, 57, founding member of Negativland, died from complications due to nodular melanoma on his birthday, April 19.

Lyons, known as “Pastor Dick,” successfully fought off the same cancer more than 12 years ago but it had recently returned with inoperable tumors on his spine, liver and brain, according to a Facebook post.

He celebrated a “lively” birthday party earlier in the day at the nursing facility where he was receiving care. He was considered an influential figure for Negativland, helping to inspire its 1987 song “Christianity Is Stupid” and a subsequent, bogus PR campaign that the media took seriously.

He was intermittently active with Negativland through the late 2000s.