By Ran Aubrey Frazier
Originally published on Advocate.com February 12 2014 3:19 PM ET
Good Morning America anchor Josh Elliott wondered if he might be gay when his father came out to him, when Elliott was 13, he revealed Monday in a candid discussion with the women of The View.
"My first feeling when my father told me was loyalty, thinking, I guess I have to be gay too. Maybe I'm gay," Elliott, who is straight, told the audience. He continued, "It's a lot to work through as an eighth-grade boy."
Elliott lost his father two years later to cardiomyopathy, something he shared with In Touch magazine in May 2012. "The night before he died, I fell asleep on his couch, and he put a blanket over me," Elliott recounted in the magazine. "I grabbed his hand and for some reason said, 'Dad, I just want you to know I love you.'" Elliott and his siblings discovered early the next morning that their father had died.
"For two years, I got to see him complete and out and proud," Elliott said on The View.
A recipient of a 2012 GLAAD Media Award for his ABC World News segment "Battle Against Bullying," Elliott brought the audience at the awards ceremony to tears with his father's story, saying of his father, "I got to see him as a man fulfilled and a man in full."
Following his segment on The View, Elliott thanked its cohost Jenny McCarthy on Twitter, "especially for the chance to share a bit of the man to whom I owe everything."
The subject of homosexuality arose in a discussion of Michael Sam, the college football star and NFL prospect who came out over the weekend. Elliott, whose previous gigs included hosting ESPN's SportsCenter and reporting for Sports Illustrated, said his "two worlds collided" when he heard the news. He praised Sam, likening him to Jackie Robinson, the first African-American player in Major League Baseball.
Watch the full episode below.