elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,
elisa_rolle
elisa_rolle

Connie Kopelov & Phyllis Siegel (and all)

On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: Chelsea residents Phyllis Siegel (born 1934) and Connie Kopelov (born 1926) got hitched at the marriage bureau on Worth Street in Lower Manhattan at 9:02 a.m., setting off wedding bells across Gotham.

City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who is openly gay, witnessed the ceremony that was officiated by City Clerk Michael McSweeney.

‘‘It was just so amazing,’’ said Siegel, who has been with her love for 23 years (as of 2011). ‘‘It’s the only way I can describe it. I lost my breath and a few tears.’’

She added: ‘‘This is the first day of the rest of our lives.’’

In Brooklyn, retired nurse Michael Faurey (born 1948) and Bobby Amagna (born 1946) celebrated their nearly two-decade-old relationship in matrimony.

‘‘It’s [been] an 18- year struggle,’’ said Faurey. While the two grooms nonchalantly exchanged vows, judge Ellen Spodek, who officiated their ceremony, broke down in tears.

Meanwhile at Queens Borough Hall, Greg Levine (born 1979) and Shane Serkiz (born 1978) were the first ones to show up to tie the knot, and they celebrated their 11-year relationship.

Serkiz said he hopes today’s weddings bring hope to future generations of gay Americans: "I hope this makes it a lot easier for gay and lesbian youth to understand that who they are is OK . And it definitely gets better."


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: Chelsea residents Phyllis Siegel and Connie Kopelov got hitched at the marriage bureau on Worth Street in Lower Manhattan at 9:02 a.m. ‘‘It was just so amazing,’’ said Siegel, who has been with her love for 23 years (as of 2011). ‘‘It’s the only way I can describe it. I lost my breath and a few tears.’’ She added: ‘‘This is the first day of the rest of our lives.’’


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: In Brooklyn, retired nurse Michael Faurey (born 1948) and Bobby Amagna (born 1946) celebrated their nearly two-decade-old relationship in matrimony. ‘‘It’s [been] an 18- year struggle,’’ said Faurey. While the two grooms nonchalantly exchanged vows, judge Ellen Spodek, who officiated their ceremony, broke down in tears.


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: at Queens Borough Hall, Greg Levine and Shane Serkiz were the first ones to show up to tie the knot, and they celebrated their 11-year relationship. Serkiz said he hopes today’s weddings bring hope to future generations of gay Americans: "I hope this makes it a lot easier for gay and lesbian youth to understand that who they are is OK . And it definitely gets better."


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: up in The Bronx, youth pastor Carmen Hernandez (born 1963) and dental assistant Doris DeArmas (born 1961) tied the knot. When they sealed the borough’s first same-sex marriage, DeArmas told her love: ‘‘I’ve got you.’’


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: down in Staten Island, a pair of Long Branch, NJ, lovebirds — Bedelia Sanchez (born 1964) and Lavern Rivera (born 1961) — got hitched even though their state won’t recognize the nuptials. ‘‘We have six grandchildren together,’’ Sanchez said. ‘‘We want them to understand that even though we’re homosexuals, we love each other and are very serious about our family.’’


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: Under a steamy half-moon Dee Smith and Kate Wrede signed their license at the North Hempstead Town Hall in Manhasset. Kate -- in a traditional white wedding gown - and Dee, who donned a tux, walked across the street to a romantic park gazebo to tie the knot. The Patchogue duo were exchanging vows by the stroke of 12 - and then rode off for the honeymoon in Rolls Royce.


On July 24, 2011, The Big Apple said "I do" to a new era of gay rights and celebrated New York City's first same-sex weddings: In Niagara Falls, longtime partners Kitty Lambert and Cheryle Rudd made a splash with a midnight wedding on Luna Island. "We're so proud of everybody who crawled up this hill with us," Lambert, her eyes filled with tears, told the Buffalo News. "This wasn't done with just the two of us. Every single person here played a part in getting this law passed."

Up in The Bronx, youth pastor Carmen Hernandez (born 1963) and dental assistant Doris DeArmas (born 1961) tied the knot. When they sealed the borough’s first same-sex marriage, DeArmas told her love: ‘‘I’ve got you.’’

Then down in Staten Island, a pair of Long Branch, NJ, lovebirds — Bedelia Sanchez (born 1964) and Lavern Rivera (born 1961) — got hitched even though their state won’t recognize the nuptials.

‘‘We have six grandchildren together,’’ Sanchez said. ‘‘We want them to understand that even though we’re homosexuals, we love each other and are very serious about our family.’’

The Big Apple weddings followed dozens of other same-sex ceremonies, conducted in the wee-early morning hours when the state’s historic Marriage Equality Act officially took effect.

Under a steamy half-moon at the stroke of midnight, Dee Smith (born 1986) and Kate Wrede (born 1990) signed their license at the North Hempstead Town Hall in Manhasset.

Kate -- in a traditional white wedding gown -- and Dee, who donned a tux, then walked across the street to a romantic park gazebo to tie the knot.

The Patchogue duo were exchanging vows by the stroke of twelve -- and then rode off for their honeymoon night in a white Rolls Royce.

Smith said she and her bride were overwhelmed by all the attention leading up to the happy event.

"We're humble people," she laughed.

They got engaged in May 2011 and thought they'd get hitched out of state next year. But when New York legalized gay marriage in July, Smith and Wrede set out to make history with their "I do's."

They rushed their way through selecting a gown, a tuxedo, and a limo, planned an elaborate Jewish ceremony at the Viana Hotel, and even got a cake from TLC's "Cake Boss" Buddy Valastro. But up until late Friday afternoon, Smith and Wrede didn't know if they would have the necessary paperwork in place to officially wed.

At the last minute, they learned that North Hempstead town clerk Leslie Gross was going to open Town Hall at midnight to issue a marriage license to two dear friends.

Smith and Wrede contacted Gross to ask for help, and she agreed to give them a midnight marriage license as well.

But the couple had to produce their own Supreme Court Justice to be present to waive a state law that mandates a 24-hour waiting period after a license is issued.

"They found a Queens justice willing to come out here at midnight. I don't know how they did it, but they did," said Gross.

Other couples around the state were also eager to claim first-married status.

In Albany, 10 couples exchanged vows at City Hall at 12 a.m.

In Niagara Falls, longtime partners Kitty Lambert (born 1957) and Cheryle Rudd (born 1958) made a splash with a midnight wedding on Luna Island, at the feet of the gushing Horseshoe Waterfalls.

"We're so proud of everybody who crawled up this hill with us," Lambert, her eyes filled with tears, told the Buffalo News.

"This wasn't done with just the two of us. Every single person here played a part in getting this law passed."

Earlier, Lambert noted "Our wedding invitations said, 'It was well worth the fight.' "

She wore a sparkly azure dress she made herself. Rudd was decked out in a white, tailed tuxedo, and their grandkids carried the flowers and rings for them.

"When I was a little girl I dreamed one day of being married at Niagara Falls," said Lambert. "The feelings you get while you stand there, it's just instantly romantic."

Source: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/first_same_sex_weddings_take_place_Cnzs5B8JcW6EC6Esu04oOJ

Further Readings:

Same-Sex Marriage in the United States by Jason Pierceson
Hardcover: 266 pages
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers; 1 edition (March 8, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1442212047
ISBN-13: 978-1442212046
Amazon: Same-Sex Marriage in the United States
Amazon Kindle: Same-Sex Marriage in the United States

Same-sex marriage has become one of the defining social issues in contemporary U.S. politics. State court decisions finding in favor of same-sex relationship equality claims have been central to the issue’s ascent from nowhere to near the top of the national political agenda. Same Sex Marriage in the United States tells the story of the legal and cultural shift, its backlash, and how it has evolved over the past 15 years.

There is a clear story of jurisprudential evolution with regards to same-sex marriage from Hawaii, through Vermont, Massachusetts, New Jersey, California, Connecticut, and, remarkably, Iowa in 2009. This book aids in a classroom examination of the legal, political, and social developments surrounding the issue of same-sex marriage in the United States. While books about same-sex marriage have proliferated in recent years, few, if any, have provided a clear and comprehensive account of the litigation for same-sex marriage, and its successes and failures, as this book does.

More Real Life Romances at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance


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Tags: gay classics, persistent voices, real life romance
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