In 2011 Shane Bitney Crone experienced a tragedy. His partner, Tom Bridegroom, fell from a roof accidentally while taking photos of friends and died. Tom and Shane were going to be married when it became legal. Because they could not, Shane experienced more pain on top of his loss due to the lack of legal status for their relationship:
Despite the fact that Tom no longer considered Indiana his home and had a strained relationship with his father and had told me that he wanted to be cremated, his parents took his body back to Indiana and buried it in a plot between their own. Even though Tom called me the love of his life and his life partner, they wouldn’t let me come to his funeral. In fact, a family member called to warn me that his father and uncle planned an attack if I dared show my face. Even though I was his first love and he was mine, I was not there with him to say goodbye as he was buried. Fearing for my life, I had to ask a mutual friend to kiss the casket for me and to tell Tom, one last time, that I loved him. (source)
A year later, Shane decided to do something with his experience. He created a YouTube video called “It Could Happen to You,” which as of this writing has over 2.7 million hits. Now, Shane has the opportunity to reach an even wider audience by turing his YouTube into a documentary with the help of Linda Bloodworth-Thompson (Designing Women) and Linda Burstyn (Nightline). They have a KICKSTARTER page and hope to raise $300,000 dollars by July 19 to produce the documentary for the fall. This documentary could have the potential to change hearts and minds with upcoming gay marriage equality votes in the fall. Telling our stories is an important step in this fight.