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Gareth Thomas hailed an 'absolute legend' after revealing he is living with HIV

The Welsh rugby star came out as gay back in 2009

2019-09-16

Words: Steve Brown

Welsh rugby star Gareth Thomas has been praised an 'absolute legend' by Prince Harry after he revealed he is living with HIV.

The rugby star – who came out as gay in 2009 – took to Twitter over the weekend to reveal his HIV diagnosis in a moving video after a tabloid newspaper threatened to reveal his status.

In the video, in which he becomes visibly emotional, he says: "I want to share my secret with you. Because it’s mine to tell you.

"Not the evils that make my life hell, threatening to tell you before I do. And because I believe in you, and I trust you. I am living with HIV.

"Now you have that information, that makes me extremely vulnerable – but it does not make me weak.

"No, even though I’ve been forced to tell you this, I choose to fight and educate to break the stigma around this subject.

"And that begins today, when I take on the toughest IronMan in the world in Tenby and I push myself physically to the limits.”

Following his reveal, Prince Harry took to the official Sussex Royal Instagram account and hailed the former rugby star an 'absolute legend'.

He wrote: “Gareth, you are an absolute legend! In sharing your story of being HIV+, you are saving lives and shattering stigma, by showing you can be strong and resilient while living with HIV.

"We should all be appalled by the way you were forced to speak your truth, it is yours and yours alone to share on your terms and I and millions stand with you."

 
 
 
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“Gareth, you are an absolute legend! In sharing your story of being HIV+, you are saving lives and shattering stigma, by showing you can be strong and resilient while living with HIV. We should all be appalled by the way you were forced to speak your truth, it is yours and yours alone to share on your terms and I and millions stand with you.” - H • A lot of you will know who Gareth Thomas is, but many of you may not. This retired welsh rugby player, father, husband, role model - today revealed he is HIV positive. In his statement he shares: Hello, I’m Gareth Thomas 🏉🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 and I want to share my secret with you. Why? Because it’s mine to tell you. Not the evils that make my life hell, threatening to tell you before I do. And because I believe in you, and I trust you. I am living with HIV. Now you have that information, that makes me extremely vulnerable, but it does not make me weak. Now even though I’ve been forced to tell you this, I choose to fight, to educate and break the stigma around this subject. And that begins today, when I take on the toughest Iron Man in the world in Tenby 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 and I push myself physically to the limits. I’m asking you to help me to show that everyone lives in fear of people’s reactions and opinions, but that doesn’t mean we have to hide. But to do this, I really really need your support. @gareththomasofficial #YourRaceYourVictory Photo©️Rowan Griffiths/Sunday Mirror

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