California has made LGBTQ history this week, being the first state to honor LGBT veterans with a memorial.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed AB2439 on Monday which officially recognizes the LGBTQ Veterans Memorial at the Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City as the official state LGBTQ veterans memorial.
The obelisk-shaped stone memorial also features an eagle and a pink triangle. The landmark was dedicated in May 2001, spearheaded by founding chair of AMVETS Post 66 Tom Swann Hernandez.
Hernandez approached Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia and together they organized a plan to get the memorial an official designation.
“Our perseverance has paid off,” Hernandez said in a statement. “California is leading the nation by honoring the heroes, many of whom have had to die in silence because they were forced to conceal their sexual orientation.”
In May, Garcia, who penned the bill, told Q Voice News that California must honor all the brave men and women in the nation’s armed forces, “This memorial is a testament to honor the contributions the LGBT community has made to the security of the United States.”
AB2439 was put forth in February eventually making its way to the Governor’s desk and awaited his signature.
Cathedral City’s Mayor Pro-tem Greg Pettis said, “Designating it as the state memorial it will be on all the state materials and everything and really recognizes thousands of people that have served honorably and need to be recognized. It really is there for reflection and for people to come and remember the people.”
Post 66 would like the Governor to attend the dedication ceremony scheduled to take place in November.