By Sunnivie Brydum
Originally published on Advocate.com September 26 2012 3:14 PM ET
It might be another month or more before the late Sherman Hemsley is finally laid to rest, in light of a court ruling handed down Tuesday that orders the man claiming to be Hemsley's brother to undergo a DNA test, the latest in a drawn-out legal battle contesting Hemsley's will and estate, valued at more than $50,000.
A judge in El Paso, Texas, ordered Richard Thornton to undergo DNA testing to prove he is Hemsley's brother and has standing to dispute the will of the late star of The Jeffersons. Judge Patricia Chew rescheduled the trial regarding Hemsley's estate to begin October 21, according to the Associated Press. In his will, Hemsley named his longtime friend and manager, Flora Enchinton, sole beneficiary of his estate.
Hemsley died of lung cancer July 24. He was 74 years old. Though he never confirmed it during his lifetime, Hemsley was widely thought to be gay. A 2007 VH1.com article on favorite allegedly gay black actors put Hemsley in the top spot.