Living in rural northwestern Pennsylvania hasn’t always been easy for Terry Husk, a gay man raised outside of Pittsburgh. In high school, he was attacked by another student, and he faced many verbal assaults from others. As an adult, his neighbors thought of him as “different,” and when working his fifth-generation farm became unsustainable, he faced many roadblocks. Like many LGBTQ people in Pennsylvania, Terry never felt comfortable enough in his home territory to live as an out gay man. Disabled now, Terry is settled in an over-55 community and socializes with a couple of older gay male friends, although fe feels his community still has growing to do in terms of acceptance.
“Everybody’s friendly,” he said about his neighbors, before cautioning, “But when I have a gay friend visit and we kiss at the door, I have to try to be more discreet. I have to put on an appearance that I’m like everybody else. I’m not going to put up a rainbow flag, but I do have an Equal Rights sticker in my window. The key is you have to be subtle.”
Photographs by Kristy Lumsden Photography