The son of an NBA legend opened up about the time he was raped.

Warning: This article contains descriptions of sexual violence.

Zeke Thomas can't remember all that much from the night it happened. But he remembers enough.

He remembers meeting the guy at the bar. He remembers taking a sip of the drink — "something didn’t taste right," he can recall a year later. Then, everything went dark.


Thomas, the 28-year-old son of NBA legend Isiah Thomas, had been drugged.

As he explained to New York Magazine, he woke up the following morning — bleeding from an apparent assault that'd happened while he was unconscious — to the sight of his rapist handing him a glass of water.

"'That was great,'" the man said nonchalantly shortly before he left, Thomas recalled. "'Let’s hang out again.'”

Zeke Thomas at New York Fashion Week 2017. Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images for New York Fashion Week.

Traumatized, Thomas didn't leave his apartment for two days: "I didn’t move," he noted. "I didn’t talk to anybody. I froze.”

Now, Thomas is sharing his story in hopes that more survivors, particularly gay men like himself, will open up about their own experiences. And, as his new PSA highlights, he also wants everyone listening to survivors to understand how to be there for them.

Thomas is the first male ambassador for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC).

That's important.

It's vital to note that women, as a whole, are much more likely to experience sexual violence in their lifetime. But Thomas, who is openly gay, is part of a community that's also disproportionately affected by rape and assault.

There's an "epidemic of sexual violence in the LGBTQ community," according to the Human Rights Campaign, which notes that gay, bisexual, and transgender men and women are often more at-risk of sexual assault and more often denied access to the type of post-assault services they need.

As a survivor and queer man of color, Thomas is one voice that certainly deserves to be heard on this issue.

Photo via YouTube/NSVRC.

“I want every young black, brown, white gay kid to know that we’re going to breathe," Thomas told New York Magazine. "We’re going to keep going. We’re going to keep marching.”

Watch Thomas in the PSA for NSVRC below:

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Photo: Canva

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Courtesy of Creative Commons
True

After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

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via Walt Disney Television / Flickr and jilhervas / Flickr

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