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“It was all so surreal. Neither Sebastian nor I were expecting so much love and support from total strangers. I felt like we were a part of a landmark moment in history that day. There was a couple standing right behind us who had been together for 31 years—it was overwhelming to see the anticipation in their faces. I felt humbled by them and by all the other couples who had been in committed relationships and who had been denied this moment for so many years. Sebastian and I have been together for five years, and even we could hardly believe that this day had come.
For us, the win for marriage equality in New York was still a little hampered by the fact that DOMA prevents me as a U.S. citizen from providing Sebastian, a German citizen, all the rights and protections that are offered to opposite-sex couples by the federal government. Nevertheless, we felt fortunate to be in that moment in time.” —Johnny Lee
Johnny Lee and his husband, Sebastian Barlebe, were married on Sunday, July 24, in Manhattan.