Looking for the gays at the Veterans Day Parade

Adm. Patrick Walsh

Parades are always a good place to take a great front-page photo. But since we are the Dallas Voice we’re looking for great LGBT subjects to be front and center in those photos. I made some calls this morning, but found no one going to the Veterans Day Parade.

I got downtown just in time for the 11 a.m. festivities.

Adm. Patrick Walsh was the keynote speaker. Walsh, who is from Dallas, is commander of the U.S. Pacific fleet. Also speaking were Gov. Rick Perry and Mayor Tom Leppert. City councilmembers and U.S. Reps. Eddie Bernice Johnson and Jeb Hensarling were also on the podium in front of City Hall.

Nice reception by the crowd for Leppert. Wild reception for Perry. Didn’t he lose here in Dallas? Guess it was just the crowd.

So in my quest to find gay vets, I did what I always do. I asked.

The Marines had a tent. I asked.

“Hi. I’m from Dallas Voice,” I said with my press pass dangling and my largest telephoto lens attached to my camera to make myself seem more pressy. “I’m looking for any gay or lesbian vets. Any with your group?”

Gov. Rick Perry

I might as well have been speaking to them in Russian.

Oh well. Army tent nearby. “Hey. Dallas Voice here. You guys know if any of the gay vets groups are marching?”

A slow shake of the head indicated, at least to me, that I actually was speaking in English.

One last chance. The Navy. My father was in the Navy during World War II and today’s parade was in honor of World War II vets. Actually, my father did everything he could to stay out of the Navy. He and his brother, Milt, volunteered to work through most of the war in Washington. They were engineers and worked on a project that created the first radar system.That did a good job of keeping him out, until 1944 when he was drafted.

So I approached the Navy with more confidence, being from a Navy family.

“Hi. Dallas Voice. I’m looking for some gay or lesbian vets. You see any you know here?” I asked.

They laughed. I laughed. They were thinking and trying to be helpful.

“It’s OK. I got some great pics. We’ll find something colorful to use,” I said.

And we did.

Happy Veterans Day to all the LGBT as well as straight vets.

Classic Corvette Club honored WW II veterans

—  David Taffet