When His Daughter Asked For A Pride Flag For Christmas, This Former Marine Went Above And Beyond

She called it the best present she ever received.

A dedication to service runs deep in Dakotah Whitcomb's Ohio home. Service, and family tradition. In the spring, her dad, Ron, a 20-year veteran of the Marines, will hang flags outside the house in Cuyahoga Falls representing each branch of the military that her family has served in. The Navy will be represented — twice. The Army will be too. 

But this year a new flag be joining the colorful assortment, one just as telling of the family's commitment to others.

When Dakotah asked her dad for a pride flag for Christmas, she intended to hang it on the wall in her room. But, when the big day came, he offered to do her one better.



Courtesy Dakota Whitcomb.
Courtesy Dakota Whitcomb.

"When I saw that a Gay Pride flag was on your list, at first I thought it was an odd request. But after thinking about [it], I think I know why," Ron wrote in a heartfelt letter he packaged with the promised flag. "I reckon that you feel that everyone else in the family, except grandma, has a flag that represents something we were/are a part of... so it makes sense that you would want a flag to represent something that you are a part of."

In the spring, he added, when he hangs the other flags up, he would be proud to hang hers up as well.

On Twitter, Dakotah called the gift "the best Christmas present I have ever received." The tweet has since been liked almost 200,000 times.

"The moment was just so unexpected," Dakotah told A Plus. "After reading the letter I asked if it was really going to be hung up and he promised it will! I know he wouldn't just say it and not do it."

Dad and daughter. Courtesy Dakota Whitcomb.
Dad and daughter. Courtesy Dakota Whitcomb.

Dakotah's dad is no stranger to discussions about equality. She told A Plus that LGBTQ advocacy was a topic of conversation within her family even before she came out, noting that her dad contributed to the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee at his work.

The Whitcombs hopes that their story will encourage families to be more accepting of each other and to fly their flags high.

"I want people to know it's okay to be out and proud about who they are," Dakotah said.

Cover image via nito / Shutterstock.com.

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