Lesbian Army wife Ashley Broadway wins 2013 Fort Bragg Spouse of the Year, offered ABOS full membershipBy Angel Cuala on Jan 27, 2013 in Lifestyle, United States •
Ashley Broadway, the lesbian Army wife of Lt. Col. Heather Mack of Fort Bragg, North Carolina, wins the 2013 Military Spouse of the Year. She also received an offer to be a full member of Association of Bragg Officers’ Spouses (ABOS), which earlier denied her application, prompting her to send them an open letter last December.
Ashley Broadway (left), her spouse Lt. Col.
Heather Mack and their 2-year old son
Image Credit: Ashley Broadway via NBC News
As stated at the official website of ABOS on Friday, January 25, 2013, they recently reviewed their own constitution, by-laws, and internal procedures, and realized that a more comprehensive definition of spouse was needed to immediately support all the spouses of US military officers.
With this, ABOS noted that all Army spouses with a valid marriage certificate from any state or district in the US is eligible for ABOS membership, which include same-sex Army wife like Ashley Broadway, who married Lt. Col. Heather Mack last November 30 after sharing a committed relationship since 1997.
“ABOS does not discriminate based on race, gender, religion, national origin, age, disability, creed, or sexual orientation. ABOS would like to publicly invite Ms. Broadway to apply for full membership to ABOS. It is and always has been our mission to support all military families.” A statement reads at FBABOS.org.
“I will go ahead and submit my application. I need to educate some of the naysayers that are in that group and show them my family is just like their family.” Broadway was quoted in a statement at NBCNews.com, after declining an earlier offer from ABOS to be their “special guest member.”
Incidentally, Ashley Broadway also won the Fort Bragg 2013 Military Spouse of the Year via online voting at MilitarySpouse.com, held last Tuesday, making her eligible to win the Military Spouse magazine’s overall 2013 Army Spouse of the Year. This award started in 2008 to honor the commitment of military spouses to the country and military community.
“Considering the amount of hard work, volunteer time and invaluable assistance she’s given to help all military families over the years, nobody deserves this recognition more than Ashley Broadway.” American Military Partner Association (AMPA) executive director Stephen Peters told the NY Daily News.
“However this award further highlights the fact that same-sex military spouses are treated differently from their heterosexual counterparts. Ashley Broadway as the new Fort Bragg military spouse is still denied military benefits and official recognition from the defense department.” Peters added.
Meanwhile, the next round of online voting for the Spouse of the Year for each of the six branches will be on Tuesday, February 5 and the winner will be announced on Thursday, February 21. The branch winners will compete for the election of the overall 2013 Military Spouse of the Year, which will be announced on March 5.
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