An upgrade worth having


Mr Spires (right) | Getty | 17013

A 91-year-old US serviceman who was sacked from the US Air Force in 1948 because he was gay, has succeeded in getting his dismissal reclassified as an honourable discharge.

Edward Spires served as a chaplain’s assistant before being removed because he was deemed “undesirable” and forced out of the military after a probe into his sexual orientation.

The Air Force announced a discharge upgrade today. Mr Spires filed a lawsuit in November.

He was initially denied an honourable discharge because the Air Force said his records had probably been destroyed in a 1973 fire. He is now entitled to financial benefits and a military funeral because of the discharge upgrade.