PFLAG Founder Jeanne Manford Dies At Age 92
By Zack Ford on Jan 8, 2013 at 5:28 pm
The founder of Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), Jeanne Manford, has passed away at age 92. In 1972, Manford accompanied her son Morty to a Gay Activists Alliance demonstration, where he ended up being attacked, leading her to declare in the New York Post, “I have a homosexual son and I love him.”
PFLAG National Executive Director Jody Huckaby paid tribute to Manford today:
[quote]Jeanne was one of the fiercest fighters in the battle for acceptance and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. It is truly humbling to imagine in 1972 – just 40 years ago – a simple schoolteacher started this movement of family and ally support, without benefit of any of the technology that today makes a grassroots movement so easy to organize. No Internet. No cellphones. Just a deep love for her son and a sign reading “Parents of Gays: Unite in Support for Our Children.” [...]
[quote]All of us – people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and straight allies alike – owe Jeanne our gratitude. We are all beneficiaries of her courage. Jeanne Manford proved the power of a single person to transform the world. She paved the way for us to speak out for what is right, uniting the unique parent, family, and ally voice with the voice of LGBT people everywhere.
No doubt, PFLAG has been a crucial force in helping families learn to accept LGBT youth by connecting them with other families also doing their best to love and accept theirs. President Obama paid tribute to Manford and her efforts at a Human Rights Campaign dinner a few years ago. Watch it: (Video at link)
What a wonderful woman she was. A gay alliance organization in 1972, wow!
Thank you, Jeanne.
Wish everyone had a mom like her.
She was a good mom and a good example.
When I was young, I wondered why they didn't just call it "LAG", Lesbians and Gays. Every PFLAG meeting I ever attended that didn't involve food was just a gaggle of gaylings and a lez or two. There weren't any parent or friends.
Rachel Maddow was tremendous telling the story of Jeanne Manford.
Just a little bump to remember her a little more
[quote]In 1972, Morton Manford was physically attacked at a gay rights demonstration in New York. Morty’s parents, Jeanne and Jules Manford, saw the attack on a local newscast and witnessed the failure of the police to intervene. Their outrage turned them into activists
The story and some nice photos at link
Soon after the protests at Stonewall 40 years ago, the phone rang in the home of a soft-spoken elementary school teacher named Jeanne Manford.
A police officer told her Morty had been arrested.
And then the officer added one more thing. "And you know he's homosexual?"
Jeanne responded, "Yes, I know. Why are you bothering him?"