A Texas newspaper removed a reference to a gay man’s husband from his mother’s obituary and cited “religious” and “ethical” reasons.
Barry Giles and John Gambill are married and have been together for 31 years. When Giles’ mother died, he submitted an obituary to the local paper, the Olton Enterprise. The paper removed references to Gambill.
As submitted, the obit read “Those left to cherish her memory include her son, Barry Giles and his husband, John Gambill of Dallas.” The newspaper took the liberty of removing Gambill.
Gambill says his mother-in-law was family to him. So when he saw he was cut out of the obituary, he was immediately suspicious. The couple called the newspaper to find out what happened.
“We’re human beings like anyone else,” Giles said. “We have feelings. We have relationships, whether he agrees with them or not.”
In more than three decades together, Giles and Gambill say they often took family trips with Giles’ late mother, Brenda Light, and cared for her when she moved closer to them in Dallas.
“She’s like my second mom, you know,” Gambill said.
Shocker – the newspaper’s publisher is a Baptist pastor, who released this statement to the news outlet: “It is my religious conviction that a male cannot have a husband. It is also my belief that to publish anything contrary to God’s Word on this issue would be to publish something in the newspaper that is not true.”
The couple is looking at legal options, which are said to be few.