Denise Niewinski and Cindy Jackson. | DONNA ACETO
PHOTO ESSAY BY DONNA ACETO | About five hours after the Supreme Court handed down its big marriage ruling on June 26, Mayor Bill de Blasio was on the steps of City Hall officiating the weddings of two couples and the reaffirmation of the vows of a third.
Denise Niewinski and Cindy Jackson, of Long Island City, together since 1999, and Katrina Council and Sarah Joseph, of Astoria, who met on a blind date at the Stonewall Inn, exchanged vows to become legally wed, while Tony, Emmy, and Drama Desk Award-winning playwright Terrence McNally and his husband, Tom Kirdahy, who was de Blasio’s roommate at New York University, renewed their early vows.
Katrina Council and Sarah Joseph. | DONNA ACETO
“As New Yorkers, we feel a singular pride today, because what began at the Stonewall Inn in 1969, when our brothers and sisters first banded together to stand up for fairness, for justice, for equality — that ignited a movement,” the mayor said. “And that movement swept across this nation and fueled today’s triumph — and that movement will continue to fight for the rights of all LGBT Americans. This is a culminating moment — and let’s just remember these powerful and simple words from Justice Kennedy, who wrote, ‘No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family.’”
Terrence McNally and Tom Kirdahy. | DONNA ACETO
In a Facebook post, Kirdahy noted that he and McNally have been “chasing equality” for years, having registered as domestic partners in 2003, then civilly united in Vermont, married in Washington, DC, having had their marriage recognized by the federal government in 2013, and now seeing it recognized everywhere across the nation.
The three couples at the top of the steps outside City Hall. | DONNA ACETO