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First gay couples wed in Santa Cruz

Posted: Monday, Jul 1st, 2013

Gayle Hendricks (left) and Diane Bedyard during their wedding ceremony Monday. They were the first gay couple to wed in Santa Cruz County since Proposition 8 was declared unconstitutional. (Photos by Todd Guild/Register-Pajaronian)

SANTA CRUZ — After being a couple for more than three decades, and after seeing their previous marriage invalidated in 2004 by a now-defunct state law, Diane Bedyard and Gayle Hendricks were married Monday in a short but tearful ceremony Monday morning at the Santa Cruz County building.

The Hollister couple became the county’s first gay couple to wed since a June 26 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court essentially legalized gay marriage in California.

“I feel great, my God, wonderful,” Bedyard said.

Hendricks said they had been waiting for the moment since the California Supreme Court struck down their previous marriage — and that of thousands of other couples — nine years ago. That ruling sparked a fight that again saw gay marriage legalized, and in 2008, the subsequent passage of Proposition 8 that same year that made it illegal. A ruling by a federal judge in 2012 found that proposition unconstitutional. The nation’s top court last week found that backers of Proposition 8 lacked legal standing to fight that ruling, paving the way once again for gays and lesbians to marry.

“We had to wait for the court to make us equal,” Hendricks said.

For the complete article see the 07-02-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 07-02-2013 paper.

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