Older man asks for his own Pride flag as parade passes his front door in emotional clip

An emotional exchange of flags between a grey-haired man and a Pride-goer has highlighted why we still need Pride in 2024.

Footage published on TikTok during Porto Pride in Portugal, a viral clip shows an older man waving a Portuguese flag as the march passed by.

One of the parade’s participants, Lily, said she noticed the man was pointing towards her and calling for her to come over. Many in the crowd were unsure of the man’s intentions because flying a national flag can sometimes be a right-wing nationalist signal of anti-LGBTQ+ views.

“Everyone’s really worried about what could happen next,” she said in a TikTok video. “So for everyone’s safety, everyone sort of stopped.”

But the fears proved unfounded as the man proceeded to offer his flag in exchange for the LGBTQ+ Pride flag draped over Lily’s shoulders.

The two embraced to cheers from the crowd and the man could be seen putting his thumbs up to both Lily and the parade.

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“A lot of people are asking me what I said to him in that moment,” Lily recalled. “I don’t even know what I said to him. I remember him saying: ‘Thank you’, but it was very loud and everyone was screaming. We were all going crazy. I don’t what came over me, to be honest.”

As Lily returned to the crowd, the man cried and waved the Pride flag. Marchers responded, similarly overcome by the heart-felt moment.

“It was super overwhelming,” Lily continued. “Everyone’s giving me hugs, everyone’s giving the gentleman hugs. It was a really incredible moment and the entirety of the rest of the march… everyone was like, ‘What just happened to us?'”

While Lily is open to the possibility of returning to the old man’s home to “get to know him,” she recommended that media outlets and others leave him alone. “He doesn’t need a lot of unwanted attention,” she said.

For Lily and many others, the moment encapsulates why the world still needs Pride, with some finding the moment an emotional representation of the support allies have for LGBTQ+ people everywhere.

“There is hope out there,” Lily said. “That’s the spirit of Pride.”

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