Elton John Returns to Wyoming for Matthew Shepard

By Ross von Metzke

Originally published on Advocate.com February 28 2009 1:00 AM ET

Ten years after his first concert to benefit the Matthew Shepard Foundation, Elton John is returning to Laramie, Wyo., for a stop on his Rocket Man - Number Ones tour.

John will be performing at Laramie's Arena Auditorium on Friday, April 3. The longtime supporter of the Matthew Shepard Foundation will be performing hits from throughout his four-decade career.

"Ten years ago Sir Elton did a concert in Laramie to benefit the foundation," Judy Shepard, Matthew's mother and the executive director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, said in a statement. "It was wonderful beyond description. He is a gracious and generous human being. We are sincerely grateful for his continuing support."

John was one of the first celebrities to approach Matthew Shepard's family and offer to lend his support, Matthew Shepard Foundation development director Andrew Tweedie told Advocate.com.

"He has been a major gift to us and we are thrilled to have his support," Tweedie said.

The Matthew Shepard Foundation was founded by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of Matthew Shepard, their 21-year-old son who was murdered in an antigay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Matthew Shepard Foundation.