52-year-old Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes revealed to the Sunday Mirror that she was feeling nervous but also excited about coming out as a homosexual
Dame Kelly is only the 3rd woman in history and the first Briton since Albert Hill (84 years prior) to win the 800m and 1500m Olympic double at the games in Athens that took place in 2004. Holmes has acquired a total of seven gold, eight silver and four bronze Olympic, Commonwealth and European medals.
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With this year commemorating 50 years since the UK’s first pride march Dame Kelly felt it was an appropriate time to share her truth with the public during this year's Pride month.
In her interview she expressed how she felt now was the time and it needed to be done.
“I needed to do this now, for me.
It was my decision. I’m nervous about saying it. I feel like I’m going to explode with excitement,” she declared.
She also revealed that sometimes she would “cry with relief” and that “the moment this comes out I'm essentially getting rid of that fear”.
After sharing the news once, the interview was published Dame Kelly said “I can finally breathe. Yes, I have been petrified of putting this out- you have no idea.”
One of the biggest revelations was that she felt she would be in trouble for or even punished for being gay and serving in the army.
Dame Kelly Holmes took a hiatus from professional running at 18 to join the Army in the late 80s. She was rewarded for her service to the army and awarded an MBE in 1998.
Holmes described a situation where the Royal Military Police searched her accommodation in what she believed was an attempt to uncover her sexual orientation. If they had discovered her sexuality during that time, she would have faced prison.
Gay, transgender and bisexual people in the military faced imprisonment if their sexuality or gender identity was uncovered however the law was change in 2000 after a number of individuals won a case in the European Court of Human Rights after being sacked for being gay.