Good Morning America producer Tony Morrison is receiving an overwhelming amount of support after revealing his HIV status.
In August, Morrison wrote an open essay on GMA's website, which was the eight-year anniversary of his diagnosis. Morrison disclosed he found out the news regarding his status when he first moved to New York City from his hometown of Winter Gardens, Florida, just 14 miles west from Orlando.
Morrison had just come out as gay and was getting used to being in New York when he took a home test and got the results.
The Emmy Award-winning producer explains in an interview with People his close family and friends knew about his diagnosis and his mother only learned once he published his essay. According to Morrison:
I can probably count on 10 fingers the total number of people I've told over the last eight year: just close friends and family. This is a little controversial, but no one in my family, including my mom, knew until my essay published as well.
Morrison explains he knew he would get some sort of attention with it being on his show's website but he wasn't expecting the huge amount of support he received. Morrison stated:
Everyone has been so supportive. I hear the word 'proud,' and I am so relieved that so many people have reached out in the way that they have. I think every person I've ever interacted with has reached out. It's been incredibly overwhelming, but that affirms to me that this was the right thing to do.
What made Morrison speak out? He told the magazine the current COVID-19 pandemic motivated him to reveal this information, along with his job. He thought it would be "unfair" to tell someone else's story for work and not own up to his own. Morrison remarked:
We've lost a whole generation to HIV/AIDS and this whole other generation of people to COVID, and I just thought it was such an unfair thing to live in shame while I had that second chance to live at the same time.