Burke, the general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the United States Olympic hockey team, suffered the tragic loss of his son, Brendan, earlier this month.
Brendan and a freind, Mark Reedy, were killed in a weather-related car accident in Indiana on February 5.
Brendan had come out to his father two years ago, but only recently stepped onto the national landscape as a stellar LGBT advocate who worked to eradicate homophobia in sports.
ESPN profiled Brendan and Brian late last year in an incredibly moving piece about coming out in a sports-centric family. Brian Burke is quoted as telling Brendan, “Of course we still love you. This doesn’t change a thing,” after Brendan told his father and stepmom that he was gay.
Now, Brian Burke has vowed to take on LGBT advocacy work of his own after the loss of his son, according to Sports Illustrated. “Brendan’s causes are Brian’s now,” writes SI reporter Michael Farber.
Burke says he will march in Toronto's Gay Pride parade in June. "I'd promised him I would march with him," says Burke. "He won't be there, but I will."
Brian Burke and his family will join GLAAD at the 21st annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York City on March 13 to celebrate the nomination of ESPN’s article, “We Love You. This Won’t Change a Thing,” which spotlights Brendan’s heartfelt coming out story.