Lesbian couple adds to Nacogdoches County's history with first license
NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - On Monday, the oldest town in Texas recorded another historical event when a Nacogdoches couple applied for the first marriage license to be issued to a same-sex couple.
The women are pleased to be a part of living history.
Kelly McKay and Julie McPhearson have been a couple for over 13 years.
They're parents of two sons - Julie's biological child, Ty, a young man of almost 19 with special needs, and Kelly's adopted son, Kelton, a 9-year-old away at baseball camp.
"We were telling our 9-year-old that we were going to get our marriage license today, and he said, 'What, you're not already married?'" Julie said with a laugh. "And I said, 'No, babe we're not, but now we can.' And we explained that, and he said, 'So, you've been dating all these years?'"
It will become a favorite family story soon to be shared with the ones they love.
"The most important thing in our life is our family and our friends," Julie said.
They allow the women to be who they are and are the primary reason they wish to be legally married.
"I don't feel a piece of paper makes a difference, personally," Kelly said.
"I don't either but for our family and our children I would like to do this," Julie said. "We would both like to do this."
The practical side of their upcoming marriage is peace of mind about things like hospitalization, insurance, and most importantly no question in the court about who the children's parents are. They each plan to adopt each other's child, whom they've always raised together.
The news of the Supreme Court's ruling prompted a celebration and more than a few tears of happiness.
"They've already come," Julie said. "Already, so. We're just very happy."
The women say they didn't intentionally plan to be the first lesbian couple to receive a marriage license in Nacogdoches County. They expect more same-sex couples will be right behind them.
"Because of the college, there is a larger gay community than there would be in a typical small town," Kelly said. "And to me Nacogdoches is sort of isolated from the rest of East Texas in that they are more diverse."
Soon the ladies will add their own wedding pictures to the rest of the family photos. Included somewhere will be the first non-gender wedding certificate from the Oldest Town in Texas.
"We could do that for sure," Julie said with a laugh.
"It would look nice and old on that old wall," Kelly added. "Yeah, we can do that."
"That will probably go in our bedroom, just because," Julie said.
Julie and Kelly plan to have a small church wedding just as soon as it can be arranged. A celebration party will follow. Julie will legally become Julie McKay, a name change she was denied last year.
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