Rebecca McDonald is a proud veteran of the Air Force, having served for seven years from May 1973 until August 1980 including time during the Vietnam War. She holds her service close to her, but was forced to keep her identity as a transgender woman a secret while she was on duty.
Since that time, she has completed her transition from male to female and is an open transgender woman, comfortable in her own skin. Today she remains active in a network of transgender veterans in the Boston area, attending community meetings and providing support to others. Over the years, McDonald was encouraged by the evolving policies in the military, including the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell under the Obama administration, which prohibited open service by LGB people. She was disgusted and disappointed to hear about the ban on transgender service by the Trump administration over the summer.
“We just lost everything we worked for. Everything. My personal feeling? Our president just put a target on my back because I’m transgender. It’s unfair and unjust. If you can do your job, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to serve.” —Air Force Veteran Rebecca McDonald
“I thought he was a traitor to every veteran out there and every service person serving our country right now,” McDonald said in an interview to NECN. “He’s the President. He just stabbed everybody in the back.”