NEW YORK (PIX11) – Cindy Meneghin and Maureen Killian have been at it for 39 years.
High school and college sweethearts who became parents, and then civil partners.
By the end of this month, they will marry.
The couple celebrated the next evolution of their relationship in Montclair Friday night, surrounded by dozens of other same-sex couples now armed with the right to legally marry thanks to a New Jersey State Supreme Court decision.
“We had strong faith that people would see us for who we are, just average, everyday citizens of this gorgeous state who have a family, who have built their life, bought their home, pay their taxes, cut our coupons for Pathmark and get just as excited about that twenty percent off at thanksgiving as anybody else,” said Cindy.
Cindy and Maureen won’t be the only couple ditching their civil unions for marital bliss.
Fresh of his election to the US Senate, Newark Mayor Cory Booker says he intends to marry several same sex couples in City Hall at 12:01a.m. Monday.
That’s the same day all same-sex couples in New Jersey are granted the legal right to say “I do.”
The unanimous state Supreme Court ruling is a blow to Governor Chris Christie.
His lawyers argued unsuccessfully against Lambda Legal deputy legal director Haley Gorenberg to delay the right to marry.
“It is clear as daylight now, when you look at the law, that if you are married you have the full range of benefits. And if you’re not – you don’t,” said Gorenberg.
In this crowd, on a church lawn, under the bright lights there were dating couples, joined by young families whose children were born during this legal battle.
But at its core Maureen, Cindy and other veterans of relationships decades in the making all stood quietly reflecting on they many years they spent fighting for equality so future members of the LGBT community won’t have to.