Yonkers Councilman Sabatino cheers gay-marriage ruling
The Supreme Court's historic decision Friday to legalize gay marriage across the U.S. was the culmination of years of struggle for Yonkers City Councilman Michael Sabatino, who is gay.
Sabatino and his husband, Robert Voorheis, celebrated the news with cheers, applause and a few tears. They got married in Canada in 2003, eight years before New York state started allowing same-sex couples to marry.
"We wanted that little piece of paper and it meant so much more to us than we ever thought possible," says Voorheis.
In the process, they became advocates for marriage equality in the Hudson Valley and in the state, at one point taking their cause to Albany before a state appellate judge.
"We expected that we're doing this work, but the benefit will be to the generations behind us," Sabatino says, suggesting that he never thought he would see this day come in his time.
The couple planned to celebrate the Supreme Court ruling at a rally in the West Village, then Sabatino says he will get back to work on other causes, like the right to safe shelter for homeless gay youths.
"I think having the marriage equality behind us will help," says Sabatino. "But you know, there's still a lot of work to do."
The city of Yonkers plans to recognize the court's ruling by lighting its clock tower in the colors of the gay pride flag.