Donald Bell always knew he felt “different” from other people, but he didn’t have the words to express it. While in college he had relationships with men, and he came to the understanding that he is gay. It wasn’t an easy revelation: He grew up in the turbulent 1960s, when discrimination was prevalent, and as a black, gay man, Donald felt especially vulnerable. Today, he lives openly in a supportive senior living facility, and he encourages people to get to know one another and look past their differences.
“[My fellow tenants] are not our social classifications to each other,” he said. “We are individual people. We know each other by name. We feed each other. We share with each other. We check on each other. We make sure that people are healthy. We live like neighbors. And that’s a good thing.”