Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Wednesday, December 01, 2021

LGBT Affairs honors transgenders with vigil

Greg was a son and a brother. He played football for East Carolina University. He was a husband and the father of two children.

After living as a man for 50 years, Greg became Gina Duncan.

Duncan addressed a crowd Friday during the Transgender Day of Remembrance Candlelight Vigil organized by the UF Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Affairs on the Plaza of the Americas.

Duncan described the emotional times she once endured and the realization that she had gender identity issues. She said she became increasingly depressed and withdrawn from her family.

“The grayness of discontent grew stronger with each passing day,” Duncan said.

For Duncan, the identity issues she experienced were not a choice.

“Who would destroy their near perfect life on purpose?” Duncan said.

In the conclusion of her speech, Duncan called on the audience to strive to be authentic in their lives.

“One day I hope being transgender has no more significance than being left- or right-handed,” she said.

The lighting of candles occurred as the names of those murdered for violating gender norms were read.

Elizabeth Spiwak, a UF senior, said she was impacted by the reading of the names and death descriptions because she is not personally aware of anyone with transgender questions.

“Hearing how they died made me want to cry,” Spiwak said.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

Donnie Fields, UF Pride Student Union president, said the purpose of the vigil was to raise awareness of violence against transgender people and to remember those who have lost their lives.

“Regardless of how much we talk about progress in our community and how far we’ve come, there’s still a lot to do for those who are marginalized,” Fields said.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2021 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.