Scroll To Top
Arts & Entertainment

A Gay Airman's Story: Coming Out to Dad, Then Mom

A Gay Airman's Story: Coming Out to Dad, Then Mom


A young gay airman who had been slowly chronicling his coming out process while serving overseas celebrated the first day of the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" by coming out to his YouTube followers -- and his father. The moment spread across the Internet and then national television.

But he hadn't released video of what he expected would be the more difficult moment -- coming out to his mother in Alabama in a phone call a half hour later.

Going by the username, AreYouSuprised, Airman 1st class Randy Phillips, a 21-year-old airman stationed at Ramstein Air Base in Germany, had already told ABC News that everyone around him had been supportive before he released the video with his mom on his YouTube page on Thursday.

"It feels great. It's nice not having to look over your shoulder, or worry about who you are talking to," Phillips told ABC News this morning. "I think everybody knows. I never thought I'd be so comfortable with it. It's very supportive. Everybody's been absolutely great."

Watch his latest video, and then see how he came to this moment in the video diary entries on following pages.

Coming Out to Dad -- September 20

After making his father promise that he would love him unconditionally, the airman said, "Dad, I'm gay."

"Gay?" his father said.

"I always have been, and I've known since forever," he replied.

His father said he would still love his son, no matter what.

The airman admitted after a moment, "I've been working myself up, sitting here with the phone in my hand for four hours," he said.

Rolling in the Deep -- Military Cover -- August 8

You may have been one of the millions who saw a viral YouTube video showing a group of airmen covering Adele's hit "Rolling in the Deep." It just so happens that the guy who posted the video was Randy Phillips, on the verge of coming out to the world.

He is the airman who uploaded the video, using the name AreYouSuprised, an account where he had also been keeping a vlog on YouTube about being gay in the military. Soon enough, his military colleagues started to figure out that the guy who posted the video of the band of singing airmen was also the guy posting the intimate (yet mostly faceless) vlog posts.

Here is the performance that went viral and changed his life.

Busted? Military Guy Forced Out of the Closet -- May 16

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Training -- Gay Military Perspective -- May 25

Coming Out in the Military: Baby Steps -- June 27

DADT: Should I Come Out? -- August 2

Coming Out -- August 25

Are You Surprised Q&A -- September 6

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Michelle Garcia