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Students support fired high school athletic trainer

Posted at 8:10 PM, Jul 10, 2020

INDIANAPOLIS – Support is pouring in for a former athletic trainer and coach at a Christian high school in Indianapolis, who says she was fired because she is gay.

Her former students and parents in the community are questioning why this happened so suddenly.

Krystal Brazel has worked as an athletic trainer at Lutheran High School since 2015 and as a softball coach since 2017.

The students say it was never a secret that she is gay, so why is she being fired now?

Sunne Richards’ son Tyler is heading into his senior season as a Lutheran High School football player. During his football career, Brazel has helped him through several injuries.

“I'm going to try not to cry because I'm a crier and Tyler hates that, but she is literally his football mom,” Sunne said. “He gets injured, I don't go on the field – I know she has it.”

“She knows all of us,” Tyler said. “All of our injuries. … She knows what to do how to do it every time. It's not going to be the same with anybody else.”

Brazel said she was fired in February as the softball coach after refusing to sign stating she would follow a school handbook that states homosexuality is a sin.

“I'd never had seen that handbook,” Brazel said. “I didn't know it existed. As a coach, I never was asked to sign anything until this particular year and I think they ultimately did just decide to implement a signing of reading the handbook so they could exclude me.”

In June, she found out she wouldn’t be returning to the school as an athletic trainer either after her employer Franciscan Health and Lutheran High School couldn’t come to an agreement.

“It's more of a why now thing,” said former Lutheran High School student-athlete Kimberly Kuehr. “As someone who is Christian and who is Lutheran, we are supposed to be inclusive. It's not supposed to be a gate to keep you out. It's supposed to be a bridge to bring you over. … I can't figure out why it was accepted for five years and now all of a sudden it's like this huge uproar.”

WRTV reached out to the head of the school why Brazel was asked to following the handbook, after being employed for several years. He referred back to a statement made yesterday that states, in part:

“The school’s mission is to prepare young adults for a Christian life in a Christ-centered environment – and the school needs leaders of its students to be committed to these values.”

Brazel thinks someone new came to the school and complained. She does have legal counsel, but her focus is on provoking change and acceptance at the school she loves.

That, and marrying her fiancée Samantha next week.