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ST. LOUIS – Military diversity will be front and center again at this year’s St. Louis PrideFest and at events around the bi-state. 

 

The LGBT military component to St. Louis PrideFest will return to Scott Air Force Base in Shiloh, Illinois for the annual Base Picnic & Diversity Day on Friday, June 27 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. near the ALS Pavilion Area.

 

“We will have our tent out there with the rainbow flags celebrating LGBT diversity, along with Hispanic Heritage Month, Women’s Heritage Month, etc.,” said Retired United States Air Force Master Sergeant Steve Zeiger, Operations Director for Pride St. Louis. 

 

Also returning will be one of the highlights from last year’s PrideFest – the Wreath Laying Ceremony at Soldier’s Memorial in the heart of festival on Saturday, June 28 at 11 a.m. Guest Speakers will include Zeiger and Lt Col Lisa Miller, US Army Reserves.  

 

On Sunday, June 29, LGBT and allied veterans both active duty and retired will march down Market with the military component in the annual St. Louis PrideFest Parade. Organizers are asking all active duty, Guard or Reserve to participate this year. The military will queue at 10 a.m. with the parade stepping off at noon.  

 

“I am happy to be able to be alive to witness the gay community being allowed, by law, to serve their country, and have pride in doing so, in the U.S. Armed Forces,” says Zeiger, who also serves as military liaison for Pride St. Louis. “This is how it is supposed to be. We are truly living what our Constitution declares.”  

 

In 2010, Congress passed legislation overturning the so-called “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military. While transgender Americans are still not allowed to serve, an independent commission report released March 13 led by a former U.S. surgeon general concluded there “is no compelling medical reason” for the U.S. armed forces to prohibit transgender Americans from serving and that President Barack Obama could lift the decades-old ban without Congressional approval. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has said that the prohibition on transgender individuals serving in the U.S. military “continually should be reviewed.”  

 

June has been designated by the government as LGBT month for all the military bases worldwide.  

 

The point person for the staging area of the military on parade day is Steve Zeiger. For further information on any of the Military events this month please call 314-570-4047.

 

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