Maria Hernandez-Peck – Coming Out

“Bill Nourse came out at age 75.”

I think people need to hear people’s stories. I feel very strongly that they have to understand that there is diversity within diversity. That people’s experiences may be different, in some instances very different, because of when they come out. Bill Nourse came out at age 75 in front of the city council. Bill Nourse was one of the folks who came to my class regularly. [His wife had a very difficult time after that]. She really got shunned, I think, by people in the church. Bill felt that he needed to do this, for his own personal integrity. In terms of his history, he has children. When he would come to [my] class [to speak, Bill said] that his wife always knew that he had a relationship of some sort going on, but he wasn’t open about it. When it came to having a nondiscrimination ordinance, this is when he felt he needed to come out. And he went to the city council and came out in his 70s! I think that there are a lot of gay-lesbian people that, some years back, were married because this is what was expected of them.


Source: Interview with Laura S. Hodgman on 3 June 2013.