Mrs. Kelly Holmes revealed that she is gay and said she “should do this now”.
During Pride Month, the two-time Olympic gold medalist said she realized she was gay at 17 after kissing fellow soldier, family and friends since 1997. “I had to do this now, for me,” she told the Sunday Mirror. “It was my decision. I’m nervous to say it. I feel like I’m on the verge of exploding with excitement. Sometimes I cry in relief. The moment that comes, I basically get rid of that fear.”
Holmes, 52, also revealed that she struggled with her mental health because she had to hide her sexuality and had to keep many of the same-sex relationships she had while in the Royal Women’s Army Corps a secret for fear of being brought to justice. . Soldier. Until 2000, it was illegal for gays, lesbians and bisexuals to serve in the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force – and Holmes feared during her time in the armed forces that she would still face consequences if she broke the law.
She reached out to an LGBTQ+ military leader in 2020 to see if she could be punished for violating Army rules and was told she wouldn’t. “I felt like I could breathe again,” she said, “a small phone call could have saved 28 years of heartache.”
Holmes also founded a charitable foundation in 2008, set up to help retired athletes transition out of their sport and create mentorship programs to attract young people from disadvantaged backgrounds into the sport.
Social media has been flooded with support for the Olympic champion. She also began filming a documentary about her experience called Being Me, where she talks to LGBTQ+ soldiers about her life in the military.