May 31, 2018
Pinay transgender model pushes for equal rights in the military
SAN DIEGO, CA — “Tonight will be the ending of my career and my last time being in this wonderful place. This wonderful industry.”
Fil-Am Akira Wyatt has had a whirlwind of a modeling career the past few years.
The Navy medic that moonlights as a runway model has also become an advocate for transgender military service members.
But despite a potential ban of transgender soldiers under the Trump administration, she’s still walking off the runway and marching back onto the battlefield.
“I’ve done a few life searching so I’m now focusing on my military career as a special operations corpsman. So I do have to pick and choose and invest more in that than this,” Wyatt says.
Wyatt is one of the estimated 15 thousand transgender members of the military, but their service has been in limbo since last summer — when President Donald Trump tweeted that transgender service men and women will not be allowed to serve in the military.
The tweet was followed up by reports and recommendations from defense secretary James Mattis.
Mattis’ input which recommended banning most transgender people from serving the military was put into a memo, signed by the commander in chief last March.
Lawsuits filed against the memo have resulted in injunctions that have allowed transgender soldiers to continue serving.
Provisions in the national defense authorization act are being considered to protect trans-service members.
Until all this is sorted out, Wyatt and other trans-soldiers will continue their duties.
“I’m still a very loyal sailor. A military serviceman and that’s who I am. It’s the only thing I’ll concentrate on, but if this industry is still here for me I’ll come back, but as of now I’m officially retiring.”
This 26-year-old joined a number of transgender members of the US Military last August who were honored at the MTV video music awards.
“I ventured in the modeling industry with all the interviews I did, and being a big advocate for trans community in the military, right now I feel I’ve already done my portion and it’s time to live a normal life.”