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Hi, my name is Larry. I’m from Macon Georgia. I am a small business owner here. I have a floral design shop. I am an Air Force veteran. I love to garden. I love to read. Growing up in the South, I learned many things from the people around me – my former Scout leaders, my mentors, my immediate family, my grandparents. And the one thing that came through was always treat people with dignity. Always treat people with respect regardless of what they are dealing with. I met and fell in love with a young man in 1993 and we started dating and he eventually told me that he was HIV-positive. And we were together for 17 years and then in 2002, I put him in a hospital with PCP pneumonia. I was there by his side every day praying, talking to him. There was a point when the nurses and the doctors told me he’s not going to make it. I didn’t believe them. I never gave up hope. He survived and he survived because people cared. We are no longer together as a couple after 17 years but I always believed that if you love someone you stand by him, so I’m there for him no matter what. We all have a story. Some are sad, some of them are very happy. But everybody likes to know that there’s somebody that listens and will take the time to get to know them for who they are. But that’s kind of what old-time Georgia country folk values are, is you get to know your people and you love them regardless of who they are.

Larry is a veteran and small business owner from Macon, Georgia. When he fell in love 25 years ago with someone living with HIV, Larry decided not to let HIV stand in the way.

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