INDEPENDENCE DAY

Born On The 4th Of July: America’s Gay And Lesbian War Heroes

As Americans up the grill and launch the fireworks, it’s important to remember what we’re celebrating today: The birth of our nation and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, an act of rebellion that lead to a bloody and costly war.

No doubt there were members of the queer community among Washington’s troops, as there have been in every conflict this country has faced. So we’re taking a moment to honor LGBT service members through history who helped America remain the Land of the Free, even as they themselves were shackled with silence.

There are thousands of others, of course, and we salute all of them.

Click through for Queerty’s Independence Day roundup of lesbian and gay veterans