Emmy Award-winning CNN news anchor Don Lemon announced he’s gay in a press release promoting his autobiography, Transparent. Saddened by the suicide of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi – a gay teenager- Lemon said he wrote the book in the New Jersey student’s memory and for the “millions of young, gay people who believe they are alone when dealing with their own sexual identities.”
“I finally mustered the courage to tell [my mother] that I had been molested as a child and that I was born gay, my life began to change in positive ways that I never imagined possible. Yet I still chose to keep those secrets hidden from the world. I, like most gay people, lived a life of fear,” Lemon wrote. “Fear that if some employers, co-workers, friends, neighbors and family members learned of my sexuality, I would be shunned, mocked and ostracized. It is a burden that millions of people carry with them every single day. And sadly, while the mockery and ostracizing are realized by millions of people every day, I truly believe it doesn’t have to happen and that’s why I feel compelled to share what I’ve written in Transparent.
In a Twitter post on May 15, Lemon thanked his supporters. “I'm overwhelmed by all your tweets and support! Hoping this prevents more tragedies like Tyler Clementi's suicide,” he tweeted.