Same-Sex Marriage Trailblazers

Same Sex Marriage Trailblazers Rejoice Over Prop Ruling

Same Sex Marriage First Couple1

You might call them trailblazers. Or california's first couple when it comes to same sex marriage.

North Hills' Robin Tyler and Diane Olson have been in a committed same-sex partnership for the past 17 years.

In June 2008, Tyler and Olson were the first same-sex couple to legally tie the knot in Los Angeles County.

Then almost a year later, they blazed yet another trail. This time they were the first plaintiffs in California's lawsuit challenging the constitionality of proposition eight, the ban on same sex marrigage passed by California voters in November 2008.

On Wednesday, rather than attending any number of anti-Prop 8 gatherings, the trailblazers opted this time to stay in the background rather than the forefront.

The life-long partners chose instead to stay in the comfort of their home, together, where they watched and waited for Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker's ruling on Proposition 8.

NBCLA was at their home when the ruling broke live on television.

"Proposition 8 fails to advance any rational basis in singling out gay men and lesbians for denial of a marriage license," judge Walker wrote in a sweeping 136-page decision.

Tyler cried tears of joy, her wife Diane smiled. A smile that beamed from ear to ear.

"I'm just happy. I'm 68 years old, and this is happening within my lifetime. That finally we are getting justice," Tyler said. "Marriage is so important it's the most important relationship that you can have as an adult when you get older."

It has been a long and often lonely uphill struggle for the couple. But one they realize is not over just because of Wednesday's ruling.

The legal battle, which has divided the state, is far from over. Supporters of Prop 8 say they expected the outcome. In fact, there are reports the paperwork for an appeal is not only in the works, it's already done.

"For a bunch of people to tell me who I can love, who I can marry, who I can say this is my person, this is who I choose to spend the rest of my life with, it's mindboggling to me that a few religious people can vote for our equal rights," said Olson.

But until that appeal, the activists say they can rejoice knowing that justice has been served. They as a same-sex married couple are equals to their counterparts, at least for now.

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