Young And Old Agree: Reality Star's Interview Did Wonders For Transgender Community

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — After months of speculation, Bruce Jenner says he is transitioning from male to female.

On Monday, CBS2’s Elise Finch went to Tarrytown, the town where the legendary American athlete grew up, to get reaction.

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People living in the shadow of the Tappan Zee Bridge have been talking about Jenner for years — first as an Olympic gold medalist, then as a pitch man and heart throb, and most recently as a reality star.

But on Monday the buzz about Jenner from resident and visitor alike was because of his decision to live his life as a woman.

“I think it will do good. I think some people, if they see someone of his caliber and his celebrity coming forward, I think they’ll feel more comfortable doing that, themselves,” Mount Vernon resident Karen Deverna said.

“He just wants to live his life the way he wants to,” added Benjamin Levitt of Dobbs Ferry.

After months of speculation, Jenner admitted during a television news interview that he is indeed transitioning from male to female.

“I’ve always been confused about this,” he said. “For all intents and purposes, I am a woman,” Jenner said.

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While many applaud his candor, some people question his timing.

“It’s strange now at 65 years old to come out with it now,” said Dawn Connolly of Tarrytown. “You have three wives and then you want to dress as a woman?”

“He should be able to live the rest of his life comfortable in his own skin,” added 18-year-old Emily McGranaghan of Briarcliff Manor.

“Hopefully, the suicide rates for transgender people will go down seeing that it can get better and you can eventually get the help and support you need from your loved ones,” added 17-year-old Jordana Kaltner of Briarcliff Manor.

“Try to be as happy as you can because it doesn’t last forever,” Steve D’Agostino added.

Regardless of age and gender, most people Finch spoke to said they support Jenner’s decision, but one man who declined to speak on camera said he prefers to remember the Olympian from his glory days.

In fact, a number of the men Finch approached chose not to speak with her after hearing what this story was about. But those who did said Jenner’s choice to go public is already sparking conversation about the transgender community.

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A documentary about Jenner’s transition is scheduled to air this summer, Finch reported.