Washington’s First Gay Couples Say “I Do”

As soon as the clock struck midnight, same-sex couples in Washington began saying “I do.”

Several local judges, including Seattle’s Judge Mary Yu, are donating their time this Sunday to marry the expectant couples. Yu married the state’s first same-sex couple, Emily and Sarah Cofer at 12:04 am.

“This is what courts are supposed to do, respond to the needs of our community,”  said Yu, whose staff volunteered to work overnight.

“We’ll sleep later,” said bailiff Takao Yamada, echoing Yu’s sentiments.

Thanks in part to Dan Savage, Seattle City Hall has been decorated for the momentous occasion, giving the 140 couples scheduled to wed there from 10 a.m. on a dream wedding they can call their own.

Seattle’s First Baptist Church will be holding a mass wedding for about 50 couples at 3:00 pm today then at 7:30 pm, Jane Abbott Lighty and Pete-e Petersen and Neil Hoyt and Donald Glenn Jenny will marry during the Seattle Men’s Chorus annual holiday concert at Seattle Symphony Hall.

Both couples have been longtime volunteers with the choral group while Lighty and Petersen were the fist couple to receive their marriage license on Thursday December 6, after more than 35 years together.

Couples in Maryland also began picking up marriage licenses on Thursday, though they’ll have to wait till the state’s marriage equality law takes effect on January 1. Maine’s law takes effect on December 29 and, as there is no waiting period, couples can strut down the aisle just after midnight.

Photo: Joshua Trujillo/ Seattle Post-Intelligencer