Bob Skinner Shares His Story
By Robert Breining
December 6, 2011
On Sunday, December 4th at 9pm EST, Robert Breining and Jeromy Dunn spoke with Bob Skinner on POZ I AM RADIO. Bob is a 61 year old young man, at 25 he moved to San Francisco where his life revolved around the gay lifestyle that SF had to offer. He calls them his three D years; Drugs, Drink and Disco. He moved back to Florida in 1980 where he pursued his love of horses and became a successful professional horse trainer. Around 1998 he started to have health issues, night sweats, shingles, thrush, yellow nail syndrome; yes these were all symptoms of HIV infection, did he know this? No, or just maybe he didn't want to know what these meant and how high risk he really was.
In 2000, he had finally had his first HIV test, it was on his 50th Birthday. When he got the results of his test, he heard three words that would change his life forever, "YOU HAVE AIDS." Bob is not your normal person, he was relieved even when he was told he had 6 months to live.
Eleven years after his diagnosis of death within 6 months, he is healthier and happier than ever before. Bob's life is now devoted to the cause, pretty much 24/7. He is now an HIV/AIDS community health educator where he speaks at community events to our local schools and local colleges. He is also the president and CEO of Valley AIDS Information Network Inc., a small ASO in Corvallis Oregon. He is also the first regional director for the board of directors for HIV Alliance in Eugene Oregon. He is a master trainer with the "PSMP" Positive Self-Management Program. He feels he has been given a second chance, and as a result he has dealt with his addictions, he has been clean and sober since his diagnosis, and he says he has found love and he loves where he is at, both in body and mind and soul.
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The Positive Pitch
I describe myself as a "positive person with purpose." My goal is to help people living with HIV/AIDS discover similarities in each other ... and form friendships. I want to ease the shock of a diagnosis and remind people that our dreams are not infected. I am also an HIV/AIDS cyber-activist, radio show host, blogger and social network guru.
For my full bio, click here.
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