Here come the brides and grooms

Amid cheers and a few protests, for the first time, hundreds of gay couples marry in New York City.

July 25, 2011 10:30
1 minute read.
New York legalizes gay marriage

gay marriage 311 R. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Wedding day in New York City.

Hundreds of gay and lesbian couples line up to get married on the first day that same-sex marriage was made legal in the state of New York.

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Freddy Zambrano and Marcos Chaljub were among the first to take their vows.

For Phyllis Siegel and Connie Kopelov, this was a long day in coming.

Applause on the streets after the 76 and 84-year-olds finally tied the knot.

I talked about what it meant to get married after a 23 year relationship.

"It was just so amazing. It's the only way I can describe it. I lost my breath and a few tears, and it's indescribable," said Phyllis Siegel.

New York is the sixth and largest US state to allow gay marriage.

Civil liberties activists say New York's legalization of same-sex marriage sends a message to the US Congress that it must repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act defining marriage as between a man and a woman.

Officials estimate that gay marriage will add some $400 million to New York's strained economy over the next three years.

Not everyone was celebrating. A handful of protesters held signs condemning gay marriage.

But such actions were lost on those who thought this day would never come.

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