The Guinness World Record holder for oldest drag queen performer, Darcelle XV, passed away on Thursday at the age of 92, due to natural causes, ANI reported.
Taking to Instagram, Darcelle XV Showplace announced the news and wrote, “The family of Darcelle XV along with her cast and crew are heartbroken to announce that our beloved Darcelle (Walter W. Cole, Sr.) has died at age 92 from natural causes. We ask for privacy and patience as everyone processes and grieves in their own way and at their own pace. Details of a public memorial will be announced as soon as they are confirmed.” Darcelle XV’s real name was Walter W. Cole.
“All shows at Darcelle XV Showplace will go on as scheduled per Darcelle’s wishes. Please join us and celebrate her legacy and memory, thank you in advance for your continued support,” the post concluded.
Cole was born in 1930 and raised in Portland’s Linnton neighbourhood. He served in the US Armed Forces and was discharged in the late 1950s, according to his club’s website, which says he used money he received from the military to start his first business.
Walter Cole is described as an author, playwright, actor, costume designer, owner and headliner of the Darcelle XV Showplace, the oldest continuously running cabaret in the United States, celebrating its 54th year.
He has authored the autobiography “Just Call Me Darcelle”. In November 2020 Darcelle celebrated his 90th birthday and still performs six shows a week at the club that bears his name and is in high demand for public appearances on television, parades, fundraisers, and special engagements according to the website.