USC volleyball player Sam Lewis used the opportunity of National Coming Out Day to come out publicly as gay in a video posted by USC. In the video he talks about be worried about coming out to people in his life, but since then he’s found a home in the community.
“I found the LGBT community and I was like, oh, this is it,” he said. “This magic that I feel right now, there’s no way that this couldn’t be who I am.”
He said he first came out to people, including teammates, at age 14 when he was playing volleyball at Long Beach Poly. Before he came out to them he thought it would be the “end of the world.” Instead, they told him it was cool.
“I felt like I could run a marathon, do cross-fit and a back flip all at the exact same time,” Lewis said. “It was an amazing feeling.”
In the video he talks about playing internationally and feeling threatened in some places because he’s gay. One of those times was at a tournament in Cuba, where a member of Team Jamaica told one of Lewis’ teammates that they kill gay people in Jamaica, and they should watch Lewis’ back.
Last season he was captain of the USA Volleyball Men’s Junior National Team.
Lewis told Outsports he’s already gotten reaction to his coming out video from a number of people.
“One of my teammates said that was the gayest video I’ve ever seen,” Lewis said, “and he said it was amazing.
If you’re in Los Angeles today, there is an event at USC celebrating LGBTQ athletes. Check it out by clicking here.
You can watch Lewis’ coming-out video here: