An LGBT leader who was assassinated for being out, loud, and proud, is being granted a lasting honor in South Florida.
Harvey Milk will have a street named after him Friday, Sept. 17, at 6 p.m. in Miami Beach.
The street sign unveiling of Harvey Milk Way will be on the southeast corner of Pride Park at 1700 Convention Center Drive. The ceremony was originally planned months ago, but has been delayed several times due to the ongoing COVID pandemic.
His nephew, Stuart Milk, helps lead the Milk Foundation and hopes to be at Friday’s ceremony.
There was only one dissenting vote in the decision to name a street after Harvey Milk. That person said Milk had no real connection to Miami Beach or South Florida. Miriam Richter of the Milk Foundation says that’s not true. While he may have never lived here, his presence was felt then and now. The idea of an openly gay man in government helped push Anita Bryant’s hateful 1977 campaign to repeal an ordinance in Dade County giving some equal rights to the LGBT community.
In the 1970s, Milk was voted on to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, becoming the first out gay man elected to office in California. He made it his life’s work to help the LGBT community feel accepted in their public and private lives.
It was a struggle that cost him his career in the U.S. Navy and, ultimately, his life. He began serving in the Navy during the Korean War, but was forced to resign after four years because of his sexuality. Later this year the Navy will dedicate the USNS Harvey Milk, a new oiler ship that will resupply other ships at sea.
He was shot and killed about a year after taking office in San Francisco.
For more on the work of The Milk Foundation, visit MilkFoundation.org.