GILBERTVILLE, Iowa — Don Bosco high school is a high school wrestling power house. This week a senior wrestler at the school made international news for what he did off the mat.
Cole Fox was awarded the 2015 Iowa Gold Matthew Shepard Scholarship, an award of up to $40,000 over four years.
The scholarship is given to LGBTQ students who demonstrate academic aptitude and community leadership. Cole wanting to make good on his potential to affect change for LGBT people in Iowa, wrestling and the Catholic Church, shared his story with OutSports.
Fox told OutSports that he would confirm rumors about him being gay, when asked, but it was not until last month when he decided to come out to his assistant wrestling coach, who is also his father.
He told the website that his father had always made homophobic comments, so he dreaded the reaction when he told him.
So Fox penned a letter to his father explaining that he’s gay and that he was still the same good kid his dad had raised. Cole’s letter was almost two pages, handwritten.
Fox put the letter in his father’s coat pocket one day last March, before he went to school. His father was going on a three day trip for work. He said he went to school a nervous wreck.
While in sixth period, he received a text from his father, it read:
“You are still a great son and I am proud of you.”
Fox is headed to the University of Northern Iowa this fall. He hopes to help bridge the gaps between the Catholic Church, wrestling world and the LGBTQ community.
I am OVERWHELMED with nothing but kindness and support. I love you all. God bless.
— cole (@ColeFoxxy) April 8, 2015
I am so incredibly honored to be a Gold Matthew Shepard Scholar. Thank you to my community, friends, family, and everyone who has been here.
— cole (@ColeFoxxy) April 1, 2015