Fort Bragg spouses club reverses course, says lesbian Army wife can be ‘full member’
Ashley Broadway, left, and her wife, Lt. Col. Heather Mack. (Courtesy: Ashley Broadway)
The Association of Bragg Officers’ Spouses has reversed its stance and offered the lesbian wife of an Army lieutenant colonel full membership, just hours after she was voted the base’s ‘Spouse of the Year’.
The decision comes one week after the group offered extended Ashley Broadway - who is married to Army Lt. Col. Heather Mack - a ‘special guest membership,’ an invitation she declined and called “extremely demeaning, according to NBC News.
The change in position comes two months after the group refused to accept Broadway’s application.
Broadway married Lt. Col. Heather Mack, her companion of 15-years, in November. The couple has a 2-year-old son and on Tuesday Mack gave birth to a daughter.
“I will go ahead and submit my application,” Broadway said in response to the invitation. “I need to educate some of the naysayers that are in that group and show them my family is just like their family.”
In the online election held Tuesday, Broadway captured the Fort Bragg vote “by a country mile,” said Babette Maxwell, founder of Military Spouse magazine and the Military Spouse of the Year award. Ballot totals were not revealed.
As one of the 154 base-level winners, Broadway now is eligible to be nominated for Army “spouse of the year.”
“A lot of people who voted never me met or talked to me or knew me from Adam. I know it was a statement to the Obama Administration, to Secretary (of Defense Leon) Panetta, to Senator (Chuck) Hagel — if he is confirmed (as defense secretary) — to the Pentagon and, really, to America that, yes, she is a military spouse and she needs to be recognized,”