On the day the 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' policy is officially repealed, an American soldier is revealing publicly for the first time that he is gay.
Based half a world away in Germany, the soldier recorded the conversation he had coming out to his father and posted it on YouTube.
Captured on tape is an intimate moment between the soldier and his father in Alabama. In the video, the soldier repeatedly asks if his father will still love him. Without hesitation, his father says he will always love him.
The video has already gone viral, with more than 18,000 views as of late this morning.
It emerges the same day "Don't Ask Don't Tell" was formally repealed.
Repeal of the 18-year-old legal ban took effect at 12:01 a.m. EDT, ending a prohibition that President Barack Obama said had forced gay and lesbian service members to "lie about who they are."
Some in Congress still oppose the change, but top Pentagon leaders have certified that it will not undermine the military's ability to recruit or to fight wars.
Obama issued a statement saying he is confident that lifting the ban will enhance U.S. national security. "As of today, patriotic Americans in uniform will no longer have to lie about who they are in order to serve the country they love," he said. "As of today, our armed forces will no longer lose the extraordinary skills and combat experience of so many gay and lesbian service members."
Information from the Associated Press was used in this article.
What do you think about the soldier's video? What are your thoughts on the repeal of "Don't Ask Don't Tell?" Share your comments below.