This Man Was Closeted For 90 Years But Now He'S Out, Proud, & Looking For A Boyfriend
"So you have two children, five grandchildren, one great-grandchild and a wife of 67 years," YouTuber Davey Wavey asked an elderly man in his latest video. "And something very special happened last year for you, right?"
"I came out of the closet, you mean?"
Roman Blank was 95-years-old when he finally came out to his family, though he told Wavey he had known he was gay since he was five.
"I just told them plain that I was born and was all my life gay," he said in the video. "And then I told them the whole tragedy of my life."
Roman and his wife, Ruth, are both Holocaust survivors, according to an Out Magazine story about Roman's life. They met, courted, and married in Poland in 1948. Shortly after, they moved to Brooklyn.
“To be gay was a crime, and you were condemned to choose either suicide or life in a closet," Roman told Out of his courtship with Ruth. "I decided to live.”
But that doesn't mean Roman didn't love Ruth. The two still love each other very much, they told Out, but like a brother and sister.
Ruth, who learned that Roman was gay shortly after their second daughter was born in 1953, kept the secret of his sexual orientation for 65 years. At 95, the couple finally told their children and grandchildren the truth.
"They understood what happened to me," Roman told Wavey in the video. "Can you imagine? 90 years in the closet?" At 96, he's now looking for his first open relationship with another man. And when Wavey asked what his type was (Marlon Brando? Ronald Regan? Zac Efron?) Roman gave the most pure answer.
"I don’t care! I don’t look at their face ― I look at their heart," he said.
"Whether you are queer or not, listening to Roman stirs something in all of us," Wavey told The Huffington Post. "And at a time when the world often feels divisive and divided, it’s good to be reminded of our common humanity."
A story this incredible doesn't stop there. Roman and Ruth's grandson, Brandon Gross, is making a documentary about their life called "On My Way Out."
"Their lives have been filled with darkness," Gross writes on a website about the project. "But somehow, their remarkable spirits allowed them to persevere and 'succeed' in America."
We're looking forward to hearing more about their story, and have officially joined the "get Roman a boyfriend" club.