Mike is a straight ally. He's a PFLAG dad in Salisbury.
When Mike's daughter came out to him, he was shocked. He worried that he might not be able to walk her down the aisle someday.
Mike looked for ways to support his daughter, but there weren't any options to get involved in Salisbury. Heck, he only knew one gay person in Salisbury. Then he found PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays).
Through his work on the Salisbury Human Relations Council, Mike helped to host celebrations for many different groups in the community. If Salisbury can have those events, Mike thought, why not an LGBTQ Pride?
Mike worked for Food Lion in Salisbury from 1975 to 1991. He says they've changed over time. Food Lion was always a big sponsor of PFLAG, so he knew they would help out with Pride.
Mike expected only a few hundred people at Salisbury's first pride celebration. Instead, close to 2500 showed up. Since that day, Salisbury Pride has been important to the community.
Bernice and Jacqui are engaged to be married. They met through a church advertisement.
For Jacqui and Bernice, Huntington's second annual Pride Picnic is a big deal.
Sometimes, it's hard to find other lesbian couples in Huntington. But being out and proud is important to Jacqui and Bernice.
For years, Jacqui tried not to be gay. It was difficult to navigate being proud of being black and proud of being gay.