Alan Greg Rogers, born on September 21, 1967, was an ordained pastor, a U.S. Army Major and Intelligence Officer, civil rights activist in the LGBT military community and the first known gay combat fatality of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Rogers expressed his opinion on the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy in his Master's thesis, written in 2005: "Today’s current policy on gays in the military seems to rest on many faulty assumptions – namely that homosexuals will jeopardize unit cohesiveness. My research has been unable to justify that position and has found that the opposite is more true. Denying service members the right to serve freely and openly violates basic dignity and respect of the human experience and puts our national security at risk." In July 2007, Rogers was deployed to Iraq January 27, 2008
Rogers's funeral gained national media publicity, initially on MSNBC, in the Washington Post and on National Public Radio's Morning Edition. However, initial reports omitted Rogers's sexual orientation or anything related to the subject.The Post and NPR reports coincided with the "grim milestone" that the U.S. Military death toll reached 4,000 dead. Rogers's death and funeral gained further media attention when it was revealed that he was gay and worked to end the military's DADT policy
LGBT History Month celebrates the achievements of many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people who have contributed significantly in several ways to the advancement of our community. Limited by the number of days on the calendar, showcasing every individual who has made a major impact would be difficult. Yet, across decades and eras, revolutions and wars, and discovery and enlightenment, SPART*A honors past and present LGBT figures in our history this month.