Presents transgender son Chaz Bono with Stephen F. Kolzak Award
US Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack had already given a very moving tribute to stepson Chaz Bono at the GLAAD Media Awards in Los Angeles on Saturday (21 April).
She talked about how Chaz 'meant the world' to his dad, the late Sonny Bono, who she said was 'watching from heaven.'
'Chaz had the courage to follow his heart and his convictions and that's what true leaders do,' Bono Mack said.
Then, after a video presentation about Chaz, a woman wearing a dramatic afro wig a wig came onto the stage unannounced.
It was Cher.
The crowd inside the ballroom at the Westin Bonaventure in downtown Los Angeles went nuts.
'I don’t have anything prepared,' she said. 'I am so nervous because my pronouns for my child just jump all over the f*cking place.'
Chaz was born Chastity Bono, the daughter of Cher and Sonny Bono, and made frequent appearances on her parents CBS variety show in the 70s. Bono initially came out as a lesbian in the mid-90s then announced in 2008 that he would be undergoing female to male gender transition.
Cher did indeed mix her pronouns up a few times calling the child who was the female Chastity to her for 40 years 'she' on a few occasions while on the stage then quickly caught herself.
'I think everyone knows how freaked out I was to find out he was gay,' Cher told the crowd. 'This [becoming a man] is one step to go past. … And then you go, 'Oh, those were the good old days.'
Getting serious, Cher said of her child: 'I’m here because Chaz has the most courage of almost anyone I know.'
Bono took the stage to accept the Stephen F. Kolzak Award, presented to an openly lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender media professional who has made a significant difference in promoting equality.
'This truly means so much to me,' Bono said. 'Of every organization out there, and there are a lot of them, I don’t think any of them do more to affect change on a cultural level than GLAAD.'
Bono also won the outstanding documentary prize for Becoming Chaz, a film which chronicled his journey from female to male.