Matthew Shepard

Matthew Wayne Shepard (Dec. 1, 1976 – Oct. 12, 1998) was an openly gay student at the University of Wyoming who was tortured and murdered near Laramie, Wyo., in October 1998. He was attacked on the night of October 6–7, and died a few days later at a hospital in Fort Collins, Colo., on October 12 from severe head injuries. During the trial it was widely reported that Shepard was targeted because he was gay. Shepard’s murder brought national and international attention to hate crime legislation at both the state and federal levels. In October 2009, the U.S. Congress passed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act (Matthew Shepard Act for short), and on Oct. 28, 2009, President Barack Obama signed the legislation into law. [ Wikipedia → ]

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NBA donating proceeds of Jason Collins jersey sales to LGBT groups

Friday, February 28, 2014
NEW YORK -- The NBA plans to donate proceeds from sales of Jason Collins jerseys to the Matthew Shepard Foundation and the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network. [ Read more → ]
From left: Dennis Shepard, Jason Collins, Judy Shepard, and Logan Shepard.

Jason Collins, who wears #98 in honor of their son, meets Matthew Shepard’s family

Friday, February 28, 2014
DENVER — Jason Collins had plenty of gifts for Matthew Shepard’s parents: a basket, a blowout, an autographed No. 98 jersey that he wears in honor of their son. They also shared some laughs. [ Read more → ]

Jason Collins’ #98 jersey honoring Matthew Shepard big seller at NBA store

Wednesday, February 26, 2014
NEW YORK — Jason Collins hasn't even worn his No. 98 jersey in a game yet, and already it's a big seller. [ Read more → ]

Once bullied gay teen starts anti-bullying coalition to help other bullied kids

Sunday, October 20, 2013
TIPTON, Iowa -- NBC Nightly News on Sunday profiled 17-year-old Jake Stallman, a once bullied gay teen from eastern Iowa who decided he no longer could suffer in silence and now helps other kids who are bullied. [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

Laramie, Wyoming, 15 years later: Reflections and looking forward

Sunday, October 13, 2013
As the sun sets on the Wyoming prairie and draws shadows into the neighboring foothills just west of the west, Jim Osborn opens the back door to let the dog outside and reflects on the October week that not only marks the annual global "Coming Out" day, but also the anniversary of the murder of his friend Matthew Shepard. [ Read more → ]

Sandy Rios: Matthew Shepard murder a ‘complete fraud’

Saturday, October 12, 2013
Not only did American Family Association talk show host Sand Rios plug the ex-gay movement and warn that gay people are trapped in “a powerful web of deceit” during her Values Voter Summit speech yesterday, but she also cited Stephen Jimenez’s shoddy reporting on the Matthew Shepard case to call his murder a “complete fraud.” [ Read more → ]

For Matthew Shepard and countless others, the work to erase hate continues

Saturday, October 12, 2013
Fifteen years ago, on the night of October 6, 1998, two men lured Matthew Wayne Shepard, a 21-year old college freshman at the University of Wyoming, from a bar in Laramie. He was kidnapped, robbed, brutally beaten, tied to a fence and left die on the cold Wyoming prairie... [ Read more → ]
Dan Jones

Ole Miss chancellor: Gay slurs at student play a ‘learning opportunity’

Wednesday, October 9, 2013
GREENWOOD, Miss. — The chancellor of the University of Mississippi says the disruptions at a campus play with gay slurs and inappropriate laughter from the audience is an opportunity to educate students about tolerance. [ Read more → ]
Austin McAfee, AP

Ole Miss students, football team disrupt ‘Laramie Project’ play with gay slurs

Thursday, October 3, 2013
OXFORD, Miss. -- An audience consisting of mostly University of Mississippi students, including an estimated 20 Ole Miss football players, disrupted the University's theater department production of “The Laramie Project” Tuesday night, heckling cast members and shouting anti-gay slurs. [ Read more → ]
Matt Shepard, in a family photo carried in his father's wallet.

‘Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine’ – The life and legacy of a young gay man

Sunday, September 22, 2013
On this 15th anniversary of the murder of Matthew Shepard, filmmaker Michele Josue -- a high school classmate and close friend of Matthew's -- brings to the screen the story of the life, death, and lasting legacy of Matthew Shepard, a young gay man with aspirations to one day change the world. [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

New book attempts to rewrite the history of Matthew Shepard’s life and death

Friday, September 13, 2013
A freelance television producer and writer is claiming that the events leading to the murder of 21-year-old University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard in October of 1998 are substantially incorrect. [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

Ford’s Theatre to produce Matthew Shepard play, ‘The Laramie Project’

Friday, September 6, 2013
WASHINGTON — The Washington theater where President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated will produce the play "The Laramie Project" and offer programs about bullying and violence against LGBT people. [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

Iowa school won’t allow ‘Laramie Project’ – opts for more ‘family friendly’ fare

Monday, July 22, 2013
OTTUMWA, Iowa — Administrators at a southeast Iowa high school have halted plans for a student production of "The Laramie Project," but the show will go on at a local performing arts center. [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

Matthew Shepard’s mother touched by Jason Collins’ tribute

Tuesday, April 30, 2013
CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- The mother of a gay University of Wyoming student who was robbed and beaten to death in 1998 says she finds it touching that NBA veteran Jason Collins honored her son by wearing jersey No. 98. [ Read more → ]


Friday, March 22, 2013
“Take just 80 seconds of your time to watch this powerful video, which imagines a world without racism, homophobia or anti-Semitism — a world in which the hate violence that took the lives of Martin Luther King Jr., Anne Frank, Daniel Pearl, Matthew Shepard and others did not happen." [ Read more → ]
Courtesy the Matthew Shepard Foundation

Remembering Matt Shepard and his passion for human rights

Friday, October 12, 2012
Today marks 14 years since the day we lost Matt Shepard. I know from the conversations I’ve had with many of you that those terrible days in October 1998 echo in your memories: where you were, how it felt, the fears, the outrage and the questions you were left with. [ Read more → ]

For Matthew Shepard and countless others… the work to erase hate continues

Friday, October 12, 2012
In 1998, Matthew Shepard spent five days in a coma while the world held vigil. And on this day, at 12:53 a.m., 14 years ago, Matthew died. For many, Matthew's death revealed the dangers of being gay in America, and for many LGBTQ people, it reaffirmed the risk they live with every day. [ Read more → ]

The memory and meaning of Matthew Shepard, 14 years later

Saturday, October 6, 2012
On October 7, 1998, Aaron Kreifels was riding his bike through a field in Wyoming. He wasn’t expecting that day to be different from any other beautiful sunny afternoon in the vast plains surrounding Laramie, but that day would change many lives. Aaron spotted what he initially thought was a scarecrow next to a fence. Then he noticed a glisten of blood. The sun sparkled on what he barely recognized as a face. Aaron had discovered 22 year-old Matthew Shepard, clinging to life. [ Read more → ]

For Matthew Shepard and countless others… the work to erase hate continues

Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Editor's Note: This article was originally published in 2010 on the twelfth anniversary of Matthew Shepard's death. Matthew was brutally attacked on the night of October 6, 1998, then tied to a fence and left to die. Matthew was targeted because he was gay. Matthew... [ Read more → ]

The memory and meaning of Matthew Shepard, 13 years later

Thursday, October 6, 2011
On October 7, 1998, Aaron Kreifels was riding his bike through a field in Wyoming. He wasn’t expecting that day to be different from any other beautiful sunny afternoon in the vast plains surrounding Laramie, but that day would change many lives. Aaron spotted what... [ Read more → ]
Matthew Shepard

Remembering Matthew Shepard on the 12th anniversary of his murder

Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Matthew Shepard was brutally assaulted on a lonely ridge overlooking Laramie, Wyoming twelve years ago this month. And on this day in 1998, he died while in a coma in a Fort Collins, CO, hospital with his family by his side. Much has changed. Much has not. [ Read more → ]
President Obama Commemorates Enactment of Hate Crimes Prevention Act

After decade long battle, federal hate crimes law expanded to include gays (Video)

Thursday, October 29, 2009
It's been more than 10 years since the murder of Matthew Shepard, a gay college student who was kidnapped, brutally beaten and left to die tied to a fence on a freezing night in the Wyoming wilderness. [ Read more → ]
US Capitol

U.S. Senate passes historic hate crimes bill that would protect gays

Friday, October 23, 2009
The U.S. Senate cleared a historic hate crimes bill Thursday for President Obama's signature, approving new federal penalties for attacks on gay men and lesbians. [ Read more → ]

Judy Shepard on ‘Ellen’ — 11 years later, the pain remains

Saturday, October 10, 2009
On Friday, Judy Shepard appeared on "Ellen" to talk about her new book recounting the murder of her son Matthew, a young gay man and victim of a brutal hate crime. [ Read more → ]
Mattew Shepard

House vote expands hate crimes protections to gays and lesbians

Friday, October 9, 2009
The U.S. House of Representatives voted Thursday to expand the definition of violent federal hate crimes to include those committed because of a victim’s sexual orientation, a step that would extend new protections to gay, lesbian,and transgender people, reports the New York Times. Democrats hailed... [ Read more → ]
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