First Sailor off ship recreates ‘Kissing Sailor’ picture with husband in front of crowd


As if the Navy didn’t help in being the butt of jokes related to homosexuality, a Florida Navy couple has drawn both praise and backlash by recreating the “Kissing Sailor” photo that is often iconically viewed as the photographic end of World War II.

In the original photo taken on V-J day in 1945, a US Navy Sailor was so thrilled by the news that the war had come to an end that he found the closest lady -a nurse- and gave her a celebratory kiss.

In 2018, US Navy Sailor Bryan Woodington returned from seven months overseas and recreated the photo with his husband, Kenneth.

When the USS The Sullivans (named after five brothers who were killed aboard the USS Juneau in 1942) came into home port at Jacksonville, Florida, Bryan couldn’t wait to see Kenneth.

“I was excited and I could not wait for it to happen,” Bryan said. “I knew I was going to dip him.”

Upon disembarking, Bryan was greeted by an ecstatic Kenneth, who “dropped everything and ran.”

According to WKRN, a local station showed the kiss on the news, upsetting many viewers who did not see the public display of affection between two men as “family friendly.”



“How sad that your station has dropped to such a low as to show a gay couple kissing on your newscast,” one angry caller told the news station.

“Thought this was a ‘family friendly’ news channel,” another viewer wrote via email.

Bryan and Kenneth aren’t too bothered- they’re just happy to be back together.

“My grandmother always said, ‘You know some people have a different life and this is how they are and you just have to treat them as such, and treat them with kindness and respect,'” said Bryan.

The couple have also received support from many who appreciated the romantic gesture, noting that the V-J Day kiss would be viewed as sexual assault today, given that the nurse never consented to the kiss before it took place.

Bryan and Kenneth Woodington were married in December of last year.

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