Loud and proud: Out of the closet in long-term care

On August 23, 2018, Extendicare Medex had its first Pride Week celebration.

Paul Leroux, 61, came up with the idea and staff at the long-term care home on Baseline Road ran with it. There was a bubble machine and decorations. As residents and visitors noshed on Jell-O in rainbow colours and cake, Leroux led the celebration with a selection of standards: I am what I am, from La Cage Aux Folles. Endless Love, Born Free, Wind Beneath My Wings. And, of, course the grand finale, Frank Sinatra’s My Way (lyrics by Ottawa’s own Paul Anka).

“I want it to be a celebration for everyone. It will be a way to thank everyone for how they have treated Alex and myself,” Leroux says of Alex Wisniowski, 60, his partner of almost 37 years.

This story has been published by Joanne Laucius and the Ottawa Citizen, on August 24, 2018. To read the full story and view media, including video and photos, please click here.

The Ottawa Citizen and OLTCA also featured a previous story about Paul's uplifting experiences within long-term care, which can be read here.