Remembering Robina Asti

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Robina, who was a transgender WWII veteran and the founder of The Cloud Dancers Foundation, died peacefully at the age of 99 on March 18, 2021—she would have turned 100-years-old on April 7, 2021.

Lambda Legal represented Robina Asti after she was denied survivor benefits by the Social Security Administration (SSA) following her husband’s death because it was determined that she was “legally male” at the time of their marriage despite all the legal documents to the contrary. She finally received her benefits on Valentine's Day after Lambda Legal filed an appeal and advocated on her behalf. In April 2014, after months of advocacy, the SSA updated its policies and procedures regarding the ability of transgender individuals to receive benefits through their spouses.

Robina told her story of living as a transgender woman since 1976 and her fight to be treated like any other widow in Flying Solo, released in January 2014.