Rejected by her family, this woman has been ‘Queer Santa’ for 22 years

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12/24/2020

For the past 22 years, Linda Warren has called herself “Queer Santa.” Each December, the 77-year-old woman suits up in a classic Santa Claus outfit for an elaborate gift-giving operation in Denver, where she distributes gifts to LGBTQ youths who feel rejected by their families. Their sense of isolation and abandonment, she said, is heightened during the holidays. “I told the people at the center that I will make sure these children who wouldn’t get a present at home get one every year from me,” said Warren, a grandmother and three-time cancer survivor. She has kept that promise. For Warren, the decision to become a source of support for LGBTQ youths stemmed from her own experience with rejection. Her parents disowned her when, as a divorced adult, she came out as gay. “LGBT youth, particularly trans youth, are at the highest risk of being homeless because of family rejection. This woman is saving lives,” [Catherine Lugg] said.

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