SANDY, Utah (ABC4 News) – A Sandy neighborhood is going viral for its support of the LGBTQ Community. It’s after several residents who live in the Autumn Ridge Drive community received an anonymous letter asking them to rethink flying Pride flags.
“Statistically, we knew there had to be at least one LGBTQ teen in our neighborhood,” said Kristy Donahoo, an Autumn Ridge Drive resident. “Utah’s our home, and to have a high suicide rate among teens. I know there was a child in my son’s high school that committed suicide, and it’s tough.”
The Donahoos, Kristy and her husband Willy, spearheaded a movement in 2019 to make their neighborhood a place of inclusion no matter a person’s background, sexual orientation or who they love.
This year they continued their efforts. “For the week before National Coming Out Day, let’s celebrate Pride Week and put flags up,” said Mr. Donahoo.
So in support of October 11th, 80 flags, 20 more than last year and 55 love signs went up.
A matter of days later, an anonymous letter found its way to mailboxes throughout the neighborhood.
The secret sender asking supporters if flying Pride flags was “consistent” with the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. In an excerpt of the letter the sender goes on writing: “Ask yourself, do I demonstrate the values of the church and do I honor the covenants that I made to follow the teachings of the church and Christ? Take notice of the ward members who did not agree to have flags placed in their yards, including our Bishop and his Counselors who are setting the example that we all should follow.”
“It doesn’t represent this neighborhood,” said Mr. Donahoo. “Our neighbors that flew flags and got letters were upset about it.”
When asked if the letter will impact her family’s support, Mrs. Donahoo says “absolutely not. No, this is about love and acceptance.”
As a result of their efforts to fly Pride flags, the Donahoos tell ABC4 they are receiving encouraging messages from other communities who are doing the same thing.