LGBT veterans honored at D.C. wreath laying ceremony

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Close to 100 people assembled in D.C.’s Congressional Cemetery on Sunday to pay tribute to LGBT veterans. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Close to 100 people, including LGBT veterans and active duty LGBT service members, assembled at the gravesite of gay Air Force Sgt. Leonard Matlovich in D.C.’s Congressional Cemetery on Sunday to pay tribute to LGBT veterans.

The Veterans Day event, organized by the D.C. Center for the LGBT Community, included remarks by Major General Tammy Smith of the U.S. Army Reserves, who disclosed her status as a lesbian in 2012 shortly after the repeal of the military’s ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ policy.

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Air Force DB is first openly gay service academy player

By : wire report
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) | An Air Force defensive back is the first openly gay football player to play for a military academy.

The Gazette reports that sophomore Bradley Kim announced his sexual orientation on Friday to teammates, on social media and in an article in OutSports.

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Tampa Bay’s Overheard: Marshall Madness

By : anonymous
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ABOVE: Cheryl Hawkes and SuZie have been named Community Grand Marshals for St. Pete Pride. Image from Cheryl Hawkes Facebook.

St. Pete Pride has announced the Grand Marshals for this year’s St. Pete Pride Parade following open nominations and an online community vote.

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01.11.18 Central Florida Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Jeremy Williams
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I have been working at Watermark for several years now, and words that I have pieced together into sentences and strung into readable stories have appeared hundreds of times in dozens and dozens of issues of this publication.

This is however the first time that I have been asked to write something that would appear on this page. It’s not an interview or a news article on an upcoming event. It’s words strung together from me to form an opinion. I wasn’t thrilled at first to be writing anything with my opinion in it.

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Air Force grants honorable discharge to 91-year-old gay vet

By : Wire Report
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NEW HAVEN, Conn (AP) — A 91-year-old veteran who was dismissed from the U.S. Air Force as “undesirable” in 1948 because he is gay has had that discharge status changed to “honorable.”

The move by the Air Force comes in response to a lawsuit filed in November by H. Edward Spires of Norwalk, Connecticut, who served from 1946 to 1948 as a chaplain’s assistant, earning the rank of sergeant.

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Gay Air Force veteran, 91, seeks upgrade of ‘undesirable’ discharge

By : Wire Report
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NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) – A 91-year-old veteran who was dismissed from the U.S. Air Force as “undesirable” in 1948 because he’s gay is suing in Connecticut to have his discharge status upgraded.

The federal lawsuit was filed Nov. 18 by H. Edward Spires against the secretary of the Air Force and asks for his discharge status to be changed to “honorable.”

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The Tender Activist: Making a stand by sitting

By : Scottie Campbell
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scottie campbellI grew up in a military household. My biological father – more aptly referred to as ex-father – and my stepfather – more rightly referred to as Dad – were both in the Air Force, so I spent the first 21 years of my life on military bases. Though the teen-angster in me often bemoaned the lifestyle of having my ID checked by a soldier with an M16 just to go to school, today I consider myself lucky for the opportunities afforded to me as an Air Force brat.

Our National Anthem played a large role in our lives. When we went to the movies on base, we stood for the national anthem before it began. Everything would stop for the National Anthem each day when it was broadcast on loudspeakers; we all would stand still where we were, cars would stop and the same thing would repeat for a broadcast of “Taps” at night.

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Transgender soldiers share their stories, hopes for the future

By : Wire Report
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Annapolis, Md. (AP) – Alexandra Marberry, 23, is one of at least 17 Naval Academy graduates who have come out as transgender, but she may be one of the first to serve her entire career openly.

Over a year ago, her position as a naval officer and her identity as a trans woman could not co-exist.

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