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Anne Heche Will Be Remembered For Spreading “Love and Acceptance”

Anne Heche, via Instagram.

Anne Heche, a bisexual actress who starred in I Know What You Did Last Summer, has passed away following a car crash. She will be remembered for “spreading her message of love and acceptance,” including in the face of homophobic ridicule from her mother when she dated Ellen Degeneres.

A family representative told TMZ: “We have lost a bright light, a kind and most joyful soul, a loving mother, and a loyal friend. 

“Anne will be deeply missed but she lives on through her beautiful sons, her iconic body of work, and her passionate advocacy. 

“Her bravery for always standing in her truth, spreading her message of love and acceptance, will continue to have a lasting impact.”

The 53-year-old had a successful career in Hollywood, breaking onto the scene in the soap, Another World, for which she won a Daytime Emmy. 

She then took to the big screen, landing roles in Donnie Brasco, Six Days Seven Nights, Psycho and I Know What You Did Last Summer

More recently, in 2020, Anne was a contestant on Dancing with the Stars.

Anne dated iconic lesbian Ellen Degeneres from 1997 until 2000. Anne’s mother and Christian psychologist Nancy was far from supportive, even stopping contact with the actress once she came out and dated the TV host.

Nancy told the Christian Broadcasting Network that the relationship was “Like a betrayal of an unspoken vow,” and that the family “…will never have anything to do with homosexuals.”

Anne Heche’s father Richard is reported to have had a secret affair with a man, while married to Nancy, and contracted AIDS. After his death, Nancy became a Christian.

Holding homosexuality accountable for Richard’s unfaithfulness and death, Nancy wrote, according to the NY Post, “I am plummeted into disbelief and outrage…I am dumbfounded, in a state of shock. Doesn’t Anne know what homosexuality has done to our family?”

Nancy eventually came around in 2009, after Heche had been in multiple long-term relationships with men.

“I didn’t deal with it very well,” Nancy said to AL. “I’m sorry I didn’t know how to deal with it well. God was giving me an opportunity. We had good moments of trying to connect. All of us were learning how to handle it. We loved each other; how do you live out that when you disagree?”

However, Nancy, author of a memoir called The Truth Comes Out: When Someone You Love is in a Same-Sex Relationship, spoke at a Focus on the Family sexuality conference in Birmingham about her husband and daughter at the time of the AL interview, and said “[her] biblical stand has not changed.”

“What has changed is my heart,” she clarified. “I had to move out of this letter-of-the-law approach. It was easy for me to be black and white, no shades of gray. But we need vulnerability, an open heart, an understanding heart, a desire to search to see God’s heart.

“It was a very difficult time, not being able to agree [with Anne],” Heche said. “I’m an advocate for showing love and respect to the gay community.”

Anne showed compassion to her mother in a 2009 New York Times interview, yet was not in a rush to introduce Nancy to her children. 

“My mother’s had a very tragic life,” she said. “Three of her five children are dead, and her husband is dead. That she is attempting to change gay people into straight people is, in my opinion, a way to keep the pain of the truth out. People wonder why I am so forthcoming with the truths that have happened in my life, and it’s because the lies that I have been surrounded with and the denial that I was raised in, for better or worse, bore a child of truth and love. My mother preaches to this day the opposite of that core of my life. It is no mistake that she still stands up against love. And one wonders why I’m not rushing to have her meet my children.”

Read the full article here

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