Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-09-19
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Bereaved parents of gay soldier speak out
From News Releases, posted March 31, 2011
2011-04-06

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


In a new video, bereaved parents talk about Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt, "A Soldier's Soldier"

OutServe Press Release:

WASHINGTON, DC,: As the military prepares to certify and implement repeal of the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy, OutServe, the underground network of over 2,900 active LGBT military personnel, and Courage Campaign, a 750,000 member progressive organizing network today released a new video from the parents of US Army Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt, a gay soldier killed in combat last month in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.

In the video, which includes footage of Wilfahrt's remains returning to Dover Air Force Base, his parents describe what drove their son to join the military and how he was viewed by his peers and commanding officers.

View the Full Video: www.couragecampaign.com/andrewwilfahrt or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=220hCk1Omw0&feature=player_embedded

"He [ Andrew ] thought he'd go, so someone else with family and children wouldn't have to go," said Corporal Wilfahrt's father Jeff. "His aptitude tests were off the charts…he was a soldiers' soldier and all of his commanders were struck by him."

"The stories we've heard from people in his unit indicate that he kept some people calm when things got rough," added Corporal Wilfahrt's mother Lori. "People in his unit knew he was gay…and they didn't care."

To date, nearly 6,000 Americans have been killed in the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition to Corporal Wilfahrt, at least three LGBT soldiers have died in combat since "Don't Ask Don't Tell's" conditional repeal was signed into law on December 22, 2010.

"Corporal Wilfahrt epitomized the courage, dedication and selflessness that gay and straight troops alike have shown in battle since our nation's founding," said Jonathan Hopkins, OutServe spokesperson and gay combat veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "Ultimately Corporal Wilfahrt's story is not about differences or politics, but the values that unite all who wear the proud uniform of our nation—loyalty to each other, love of country, and the willingness to give their lives in its defense."

The Wilfahrt video will be featured on the Courage Campaign's "Testimony" website. Testimony is a one-of-a-kind online tool featuring stories, images, and videos of LGBT families across the country, as well as their friends and allies.

"We are so grateful to the Wilfahrts for their service to our country and for sharing their powerful story," said Courage Campaign Chairman and Founder Rick Jacobs. "While Andrew's loss leaves a void in his unit and family, we all honor his legacy by ensuring the nation for which Corporal Wilfahrt made the ultimate sacrifice lives up to its highest ideals—to include full equality for LGBT Americans, both inside and outside of the military."

OutServe is an underground network of actively serving members of the United States Armed Services who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. The organization is led by an active-duty member who goes by the pseudonym of JD Smith and civilian Co-Director Ty Walrod. For more information, visit www.outserve.org .

Courage Campaign is a multi-issue online organizing network that empowers more than 700,000 grassroots and netroots supporters to work for progressive change and full equality in California and across the country. Last year, the Courage Campaign mobilized nearly 700,000 petition signatories from all 50 states and around the world advocating DADT Repeal--including more than 12,500 veterans and military families. Through a one-of-a-kind online tool called Testimony: Take A Stand, the Courage Campaign is chronicling the sights, sounds and stories of LGBT families and all who wage a daily struggle against discrimination across America. For more information about Testimony, please visit, http://www.couragecampaign.org/testimony.

Statement by Jonathan Hopkins, OutServe Washington, D.C. Spokesperson, Member of the Board:

When I was an Infantry Company Commander, nothing struck me more deeply than seeing what one Soldier would do for another brother or sister in arms. The sacrifices they would make for each other's lives at the risk of their own serve as a constant reminder of the depth with which they care for one another. Ultimately, this mutual sacrifice is what drives good military organizations—a type of sacrifice that knows no gender, ethnicity, or orientation.

Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt lived for his comrades in arms, and as a result of a roadside bomb on February 27th, 2011, he also died for them. It did not matter to those around him in uniform that he was gay, nor did it matter to his parents. He was a Soldier. But due to a law made years ago and thousands of miles away, he had to choose between a military life and a personal life in a way few others did. His military experience is representative of the tens of thousands of gay, lesbian, or bisexual men and women who have served our country, as well as the scores who have died for it.

Please take a moment to view this video [ AT THE LINK BELOW ] in which Andrew's parents eloquently discuss what this gifted young man contributed

www.youtube.com/watch?v=220hCk1Omw0&utm_source=OutServe&utm_campaign=615aa152af-Corporal_Andrew_Wilfahrt&utm_medium=email

Soon, others like Corporal Wilfahrt will be able to serve without having to segregate the two things that matter most to them—the organization they steadfastly serve from those they deeply love. In an institution that craves standards, the double standard required by "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" will be forever gone — replaced by one common military standard: an expectation placed on everyone to serve honorably, professionally, and capably, demonstrating mutual respect for one another.

I hope you find yourself as thankful that we have such caring and capable people serving our country, as you are that in short order, they will no longer have to sacrifice part of their lives in order to serve. That day is nearly here.

Jonathan Hopkins

OutServe Washington, D.C. Spokesperson

Member of the Board


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

U.S. District Court Denies Move to End Injunction Blocking Transgender Military Ban 2018-09-19
NATIONAL Third-gender option, HIV+ military, intersex guide, West Hollywood 2018-09-18
LGBTQ military veterans to hold national conference and Sept. 22 banquet 2018-09-17
WORLD Chelsea Manning, gay couple, Malaysia caning 2018-09-11
House Dem Leader Nancy Pelosi to headline OutServe-SLDN's Serving with Pride event 2018-09-06
Judge Rejects Trump's Attempts to Quash Trans Military Ban Lawsuit 2018-08-06
NCLR, GLAD on the Transgender Military Ban, One Year After Trump Tweet 2018-07-26
NATIONAL Conversion therapy, service members, judge withdrawn 2018-07-24
Lambda Legal, OutServe-SLDN Ask Court to Stop Discharges of HIV+ Service Members 2018-07-18
9th Circuit denies another Trump effort to implement transgender military ban 2018-07-18
Transgender veterans as healthy as cisgender veterans, study finds 2018-07-11
NATIONAL Historic town hall, Trump and the military 2018-07-10
New program to serve LGBT military with mental illnesses, substance abuse 2018-07-09
Friend-of-the-court briefs urge 9th Circuit to maintain block on trans military ban 2018-07-03
Two years into open transgender service, consensus says inclusive policy works 2018-07-01
Federal Court Denies Renewed Attempt to Implement Transgender Military Ban 2018-06-15
Official support missing from Pentagon LGBT pride observance, AMPA comments 2018-06-13
City hosts LGBTQ Veterans Salute 2018-06-13
City of Chicago Salute to LGBTQ Veterans Daley Center Plaza June 13 2018-06-04
LGBTQ veterans of AVER, Lakeside Pride Freedom Marching Band join Memorial Day Parade 2018-05-27
2018 Transgender Military Summit June 6-8 in Washington, DC 2018-05-18
Trans military persons file in Trump ban case 2018-05-12
NATIONAL Military ban, Joy Reid, Sen. Doug Jones 2018-04-17
Lambda Legal Challenge to Military Trans Ban on Course to Proceed to Trial 2018-04-14
AMA disputes transgender military policy in letter to Sec. Def. Mattis 2018-04-04
OutServe-SLDN, OUT Foundation Join Forces in support of LGBTQ servicemember and veteran health 2018-03-30
Senior DOJ Official Diana Flynn Moves to Lambda Legal 2018-03-29
Palm Center Memo on Trump Trans Military Ban Analyzes Latest DOD Announcement 2018-03-28
Former Surgeons General Debunk Pentagon Assertions on Medical Fitness of Trans Troops 2018-03-28
26 Retired General, Flag Officers Oppose Trump Transgender Military Ban 2018-03-28
Lambda Legal, OutServe-SLDN Want Trans Military Ban in the Dustbin of History 2018-03-27
Lambda Legal, OutServe-SLDN Urge District Court to Block Transgender Military Ban 2018-03-25
LGBTQ veterans briefed on scams targeting veterans 2018-03-24
Trump issues transgender military ban 2018-03-23
LGBTQ military, veteran event on March 16 2018-03-07
LGBT military groups celebrate first out trans recruit joining the Armed Forces 2018-02-27
OutServe-SLDN moves hires key staffer to focus on LGBT veterans 2018-02-27
Full page USA Today ad shows bipartisan opposition to Trump's trans military ban 2018-02-26
Lambda Legal, OutServe-SLDN ask for permanent block on transgender military ban 2018-01-25
Center talk explores VA's commitments to LGBT healthcare 2018-01-23
 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Submit an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.