Post submitted by Maureen McCarty, former HRC Deputy Director of Marketing

Three years ago today, loving, committed same-sex couples of Washington, D.C. were able to legally marry for the first time.

Washington, D.C. was the first jurisdiction below the Mason-Dixon Line and the sixth American jurisdiction to recognize marriage equality, following Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont and New Hampshire.

Today HRC celebrates marriage in the District, a day filled with filled with joy, vows of commitment and love. 

At a ceremony at HRC’s headquarters, three couples – Angelisa and Sinjoyla, Reginald and Rocky, and Darlene and Candy, who were among the first to apply for marriage licences in D.C. – legally wed in consecutive ceremonies.

Angelisa and Sinjoyla, both African-American women who reside in Ward 8 of the District, were the first in line to register for a marriage license, and were among the first lesbian couples to legally wed in the nation’s capital.

At the time of their marriage, Angelisa and Sinjoyla had been together for 12 years and have two children.

Reginald (Reggie) Stanley and Rocky Gallowa are long-time residents of the District. At the time of their marriage, they were both 50 years old with two children. Reggie and Rocky were married immediately following Angelisa and Sinjoyla. Jim Cullion (the best man) and Cherrie McCoy (the best woman) also participated in their ceremony.

Rev. Elder Darlene Garner and Rev. Lorilyn Candy Holmes were both born in D.C. and are currently residents of Laurel, MD. Each served in leadership roles in the MCC Church and have been active in the D.C. community for more than 20 years. Darlene and Candy are mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers.

Witness again Angelisa and Sinjoyla, Reginald and Rocky, and Darlene and Candy making history.


Looking for the perfect gift for upcoming nuptials? HRC's Wedding Registry is a unique opportunity for couples to encourage loved ones to make a donation in honor of their wedding or commitment ceremony. This is a great way to celebrate their special day, but also a great way to support HRC's work. Learn more at

Filed under: Marriage

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