Nathan Mallory | Air Force

Nathan Mallory of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, grew up in the rural farming community of Titusville. Not wanting to remain in a small town, Nate enlisted in the United States Air Force in 2000–the first in his family to serve in the military, and as an Eagle Scout, he was well prepared.

Nate trained as a security officer. For the majority of his six-year enlistment, he was stationed in Albuquerque, New Mexico (with one deployment to Kuwait) as an elite security controller credentialed with the highest security clearances within the nuclear arsenal.

By all accounts, Nate’s professional career in the Air Force was exemplary and distinguished, and he received numerous awards and commendations for his service. However, as a gay man Nathan’s career was always in jeopardy of punitive treatment by the military.

Speaking of the military’s anti-gay policy prior to and during the time he served, Nate says, “It was fear driven, instilled through ignorance . . . now, we have a whole lot more to worry about than gays in the military.”

Throughout 2016, the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative partnered with the Allegheny-Kiski Valley Historical Society to record veterans’ oral histories at their Heritage Museum in Tarentum, Pennsylvania. On July 14, 2016, Air Force veteran Nathan Mallory of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania joined us at the museum to be interviewed by Nick Grimes, army veteran of Afghanistan and director of the Veterans Breakfast Club’s Post-9/11 Veterans Storytelling Project. Veteran Voices executive producer Kevin Farkas and associate media producer Bryan Chemini recorded and photo-documented the interview.

For more veterans oral histories, visit the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative.

KEYWORDS: AIR FORCE, ALBUQUERQUE, BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA, DISCRIMINATION, DON'T ASK DON'T TELL, EAGLE SCOUT, GAYS IN THE MILITARY, KUWAIT, PITTSBURGH, SECURITY POLICE, TITUSVILLE

The Social Voice Project is dedicated to understanding the voices and stories of our lives–those first-hand, authentic accounts of lived experiences we call oral histories.  Sharing these experiences reveals our social, economic, and political lives, and they help forge important understandings of public histories.

 

 

The Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative is a veteran-run, award-winning 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Our mission is to capture, preserve, and share the voices, images, and experiences of veterans of all eras and branches of service with a Western Pennsylvania connection.   

 

 

The mission of the Veterans Breakfast Club is to create communities of listening around veterans and their stories to ensure that this living history will never be forgotten. We believe that through our work, people will be educated, healed, and inspired.  The Veterans Breakfast Club is a non-religious, non-political 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.