Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Clear Night 53° Clear
News >  World

Two couples tie the knot in Australia’s 1st same-sex weddings

UPDATED: Sun., Dec. 17, 2017

In this image made from video, newlywed couple, Amy Laker, left, and Lauren Price are interviewed during their ceremony in Sydney, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Associated Press)
In this image made from video, newlywed couple, Amy Laker, left, and Lauren Price are interviewed during their ceremony in Sydney, Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017. (Associated Press)
By Trevor Marshallsea Associated Press

SYDNEY – Two female couples tied the knot in Australia’s first same-sex weddings under new legislation allowing gay marriages.

Jan. 9 had been expected to be the first possible date for same-sex weddings due to a four-week waiting period since the landmark law was passed. But the two couples were married in Sydney and Melbourne on Saturday after being granted permission to waive the notice period.

Lauren Price, 31, and Amy Laker, 29, exchanged vows in Sydney because their families had to travel from Wales in the U.K. to attend what was to have been their commitment ceremony.

Amy and Elise McDonald – who coincidentally already had the same last name – were given an exemption to marry in Melbourne since their relatives also had flown in from overseas.

West Australian couple Anne Sedgwick and Lyn Hawkins were due to wed on Sunday after being together for 40 years. They were given dispensation as Hawkins, 85, is in the final stages of her battle against ovarian cancer.

“Anne has been very supportive through all this and marrying her, it’s Anne’s way of saying ‘Let’s finally do this,’” Hawkins told website Perth Now.

On Monday, Cas Willow, 53, and Heather Richards, 56, will marry in Melbourne. Willow is receiving treatment for breast cancer, which has spread to her brain.

The couple, who have been together for 17 years, say marriage will make their last precious few weeks or days together “complete.”

“It means our relationship won’t just be tolerated, it will be accepted,” Richards said.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.