First of all, I’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to Mr Starr for fighting in World War II and helping to bring peace to a shattered Europe..
Second, I’d like to thank Mr Starr for also fighting for the rights of our LGBT sisters and brothers who serve in our military.
UPPER ARLINGTON, Ohio (AP) — Like thousands of other young men in the 1940s, Rupert Starr joined the Army, fought overseas and saw his share of hardship, including several weeks as a German prisoner of war. He returned to Ohio with a Bronze Star for heroism and a secret.
Not until his service as a military man was needed once again — this time as an activist against the Pentagon’s “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy — did Starr, who is gay, slowly step out of the closet.
Now 92 and still on the go, Starr — known universally by his family nickname “Twink” — is unabashed in his support for fellow gays in the service and love for his country.
“They were saying that you could not have the courage or the nerve to be in combat and you weren’t qualified then to protect your buddy, because you would give up, you’d fade or you’d die, you cry,” said Starr, who was honored last weekend at a Stonewall Columbus veterans event.
“Well, that’s not true,” he said. “And I can prove it.”