Two-and-a-half years after its groundbreaking "Gay America" cover story Newsweek ran another gay themed story on its cover. Titled "Growing Up Gay", it appeared on newsstands and subscribers' mailboxes on Jan. 6, 1986 (cover date: Jan. 13). Like the previous story, this one had a photo of its subject on the cover, 26-year-old Kelly Chronister from Washington state - a very ballsy, and commendable, decision on his part to come out so publicly. The article looked at the coming out process from his perspective as well as that of his parents.
Besides reporting on the typical challenges posed by coming out to one's family the story also discussed how the onset of the unfolding AIDS crisis added another facet to the coming out process. (This issue hit newsstands a few months after the An Early Frost aired, a TV movie in which the protagonist not only came out to his family but also had to deal with an AIDS diagnosis.) I could identify with Kelly because I was just a few years older than him and faced some of the same issues.
I wonder whatever became of Kelly Chronister. I did a Google search but could find nothing about his whereabouts. However, I did come across an editorial in the Spokane Chronicle published four months after the Newsweek story appeared. The editorial was against an anti-gay employment initiative in Washington state and mentioned how Kelly's appearance in Newsweek had been a positive step in humanizing homosexuals. Now the post you're reading will turn up whenever someone Googles Mr. Chronister.