BOSTON (CBS) – Sixty four police recruits graduated from the Boston Police Academy Wednesday and officially logged on as officers. For two openly gay cadets, it represented a profound bit of history.
“It’s not just here come the gay cops, that’s not how we want it to sound to people. We worked hard like everybody else. We scored 100s on the exams,” said James Moccia, whose father and brother are already Boston Police Officers.
He and his partner Shawn MacIver are the first openly gay couple to ever graduate from a police academy together.
They met five years ago when they both worked as security guards at a gay bar in Boston. Even though they dreamed of becoming police officers, it took a long time to consider it a realistic career for gay men.
“Throughout my life I just kind of put it on the back burner. I have a degree in fashion design,” said Moccia. “I had reservations even going into the academy, which is why I entered in my 30s rather than my 20s.”
They say their classmates are like family, and couldn’t have been more supportive. They hope tolerance in uniform will be matched by tolerance in the community they serve.
“With the Commissioner hiring such a diverse command staff already,” said Moccia, “it kind of set a foundation for us as minorities to kind of feel more comfortable and feel more of a connection.”