Gay Paralympian who said he’s willing to go to prison for opposing anti-LGBT laws to be knighted
The Queen’s New Year’s Honours list is to recognise out gay Paralympian Lee Pearson.
He is to become Sir Lee Pearson, having been awarded a knighthood in the list.
The dressage competitor has 11 gold medals from competing in the games.
He has taken part in every games since Sydney in 2000.
Over the course of his career he has won 30 gold medals at European, World and Paralympic level.
He previously said he was prepared to go to prison for being openly gay at the Sochi Games.
“In some respects I hope I do because then the Prime Minister and my country would have to get involved and that would add to the embarrassment for Russia.”
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The decorated sportsman led the UK’s Paralympians in the Maracana stadium in Rio.
He said at the time: “Being a diverse character myself has meant that being voted by the athletes themselves has made this moment even more special.”
Fashion designer and campaigner Victoria Beckham is also honoured
She’s to be appointed an OBE for her charity work on the issue of HIV AIDs.
The campaigner has caused outrage however – seeming to reveal the news days before the official embargo.
Mrs Beckham is a goodwill ambassador for the UN’s anti-AIDS programme.
“Many of us live incredibly lucky, blessed lives and we have a responsibility to help others less fortunate in whichever way we can,” she previously told The Metro, discussing her HIV AIDS campaigning.
The 42-year-old added: “The main thing I learnt is prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV is possible with affordable, readily available medications.”