On Tuesday, Rosanna, 59, posted a sweet snapshot in which she looks lovingly at her sister in a car. Rosanna captioned it, “2 years ago today. Alexis Arquette left this planet we love you Alexis.”
Alexis, an early transgender activist in Hollywood, died at age 47 from complications stemming from HIV, which she had contracted almost three decades before, in September 2016.
Rosanna posted two additional photos of Alexis as she remembered her sister.
“Alexis was a brilliant artist and painter, a singer, an entertainer and an actor. She starred in movies like Last Exit to Brooklyn, Pulp Fiction, Jumpin’ at the Boneyard, Of Mice and Men, The Wedding Singer, and The Bride of Chucky,” the family said in a statement after her death.
The statement added, “Her career was cut short, not by her passing, but by her decision to live her truth and her life as a transgender woman. Despite the fact that there are few parts for trans actors, she refused to play roles that were demeaning or stereotypical. She was a vanguard in the fight for understanding and acceptance for all trans people.”
Rosanna opened up about her loss on Watch What Happens Live in July, when a caller asked about Rosanna’s favorite memory with her sister.
“Well, every birthday — July 28th will be her birthday that’s coming up — and we would go out to a special lunch just the two of us,” she answered. “That was a very special time, and we always had champagne, and I loved her so much.”
Rosanna said that her family was struggling in the years after Alexis’ death. “It’s been fractured and hard since Alexis passed. It’s been really painful for all of us. We’re in PTSD,” she explained.
In May, Rosanna told PEOPLE about her enduring connection with her sister. “Alexis was our hero and it’s a huge wound, an open gaping wound, in our family,” she said. “That’s why I started the Alexis Arquette Family Foundation on behalf of us all, so that we could do good things in the world under Alexis’s name.”
One of the Foundation’s initiatives was founding the Alexis Project with the Violence Intervention Program at the LAC+USC Medical Center to give queer young people medical and mental health services.
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“Half of the homeless kids on the street are still figuring it out, questioning [their sexuality] and they’re often abused and that’s really sad,” Rosanna noted to PEOPLE. “So this is a place for them to get some help and medical [treatment] and therapy. No one should feel ashamed of their sexuality or who they want to love.”
Six months after Alexis’ death, Patricia told PEOPLE about her sister’s legacy. “Alexis was really also very powerful, and strong, and really brave, very brave,” Patricia said. “She really wanted to help progress the world and move the world forward.”