Couples marry in St. Joseph County - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Couples marry in St. Joseph County

 Most clerk's offices close at 4:00 PM, which left very little time for couples to get their applications in. But Wednesday, St. Joseph County gave licenses to 19 same sex couples at the St. Joseph County Clerks Office.

"I think it's wonderful that my Dada and Papa are getting married," says 5-year old Sophia Bovo-Schmokel. Wednesday, she witnessed St. Joseph County history, as her two fathers were the first gay couple to sign on the dotted line.

"It's legal. We know that she's going to be taken care of, and there's going to be no battles of people fighting anything with us, and hopefully end of discrimination," says Greg Bovo.
Greg Bovo and David Schmokel have been together for 26 years. Schmokel was born and raised in St. Joe County, and he says getting his license at home makes Wednesday all the more special. "I wanted to do it here. I didn't want to do it in Elkhart County or any of the surrounding counties, I wanted to do it here. So here we are, I guess we're the first," says Schmokel.

Sharon Stanley and Kathryn Saunders were the second couple to receive their license, but the first female couple. "I can't believe it's happening while I'm still alive, in Indiana no less," says Stanley.

The same-sex marriage licenses expire in 60-days on August 25th. Many couples stopped into the County Clerks office to apply for a license, but some came in for different reasons.

"I came down here to witness history being made. I knew that Indiana would be on the right side of history, I didn't know it would be today," says Willow Wetherall. She says Wednesday marks a new era in Indiana history because this is civil rights issue of her generation. "I've got three beautiful children, I don't know who they'll grow up to be but I want them to have the same rights as everyone else and know that they can be free to be themselves," she says.

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