weather

79°

Cloudy | 6MPH

NEWSROOM * CIRCULATION * ADVERTISING

CONTACT US MANAGE ACCOUNT SUBSCRIBE

Wednesday

August 2014

20

Locals marry under new rules among first to get wed

Pastor Nansi Hawkins, of Emmanuel United Church of Christ, blesses the wedding rings for Jeanne Phelan and Teresa Skiba of Oconomowoc and Jim and Alex Langreder of Delafield, at the Waukesha County Court House Monday, June 9, 2014.

Pastor Nansi Hawkins, of Emmanuel United Church of Christ, blesses the wedding rings for Jeanne Phelan and Teresa Skiba of Oconomowoc and Jim and Alex Langreder of Delafield, at the Waukesha County Court House Monday, June 9, 2014. Photo by: Todd Ponath

Love is in the air in Wisconsin.

The freedom to marry was granted to members in same sex-relationships across the state last week after a federal judge ruled Wisconsin's ban was unconstitutional.

That makes 19 states, including the District of Columbia, that have legalized same-gender marriages, with legal challenges in the 31 other states.

For Delafield resident Jim Langreder, Friday, June 6, was a day unfolding like any other day, when it suddenly took a life-altering turn.

"Our kids had a play date, and I was checking my phone and saw something posted on Facebook (about the ruling)," he said. "I immediately texted my partner, Alex, and all our friends. Everyone was overjoyed."

"I thought, sad to say, that Wisconsin would be one of the last (to allow same-sex marriages)," Langreder admitted.

He and Alex have been in a committed relationship since 2002 and are raising two children together. They held a commitment ceremony on their five-year anniversary.

"Our commitment ceremony was the real deal; it was just missing the legal papers," he explained.

"For us, it's always been about protecting the children. We have wills, but all that is not ironclad when that child is not your partner's," Langreder said. In Wisconsin, gay couples cannot adopt children. In the case of this family, the couple's son is legally Jim's child, their daughter is Alex's.

"If we're allowed to get married, that takes care of that," he added.

Although surprised by the ruling, Jim said he knew it was just a matter of time.

"I've always felt that one day it would eventually happen, and if we just kept on living our lives, like all families do, it would happen. We just had to be patient and allow people's minds and hearts to open," he said.

The couple headed to the Waukesha County Courthouse on Monday afternoon to get their license. The Rev. Nansi Hawkins of Emanuel United Church of Christ in Dousman married them in front of the courthouse Monday. They had planned to wed at the church this weekend, because there is generally a five-day waiting period between receiving the license and the wedding, but since that requirement was waived, they married the same day.

Also on their way to the courthouse Monday for a marriage license were Oconomowoc residents Jeanne Phelan and Terrry Skiba, who have been together for 19 years.

"I did think this day would come, just not under this governor," Phelan said.

"It's a relief," she said of the ruling.

"It takes away the social stigma and the political stigma that it's not OK to be me. We don't have to be second-class citizens any more," Phelan added.

The women were the first to have a domestic partnership recognized by the county; Jim and Alex Langreder were second. The couples thought it was only fitting to go for their marriage licenses together.

"We thought that would be cool," Phelan said.

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.


Living Lake Country

E-mail Newsletter

Top stories from the Lake Country area. Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings.


Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter
Get the Newsletter!

Login or Register to manage all your newsletter preferences.
Tools
TEXT SIZE
Lake Country Construction Guide

 

Consruction season is underway in Lake Country and

we've got you covered when it comes to street closures and delays:

Mukwonago area projects

Sussex, Menomonee Falls area projects

Kettle Moraine area projects

Greater Lake Country area projects

 

Community Pride 2014

  

Celebrate Lake Country 

communities with stories

of community pride

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rummage Router
Just click to find a rummage near you
Your Photos
Maria Anderson - Hartland , WI
Community Blogs

Lake Country residents share their views on news, happenings and current events.

Cook's Corner
By Cynthia Acosta Luksich
It’s 5 o’clock somewhere: Bourbon Slush

It's Hemmer Time
By Amy L. Geiger-Hemmer
Obama bein' Obama

Bernie Ziebart

The Engineering Perspective
By Bernie Ziebart
ISIS

Fair E-tales

Until next time

"Hear's" to Life!
By Tami Klink
October Conference for Hearing Loss!

LivingLakeCountry.com features more than a dozen community bloggers - a group of volunteer conversation leaders who are up on the latest topics and never short on an opinion. Just a few are pictured here. Check out the rest and see what they have to say!

View All Blogs

Discussion Guidelines

Do you want to become a Community Blogger? LivingLakeCountry.com welcomes your thoughts and opinions. Contact us for more information:
I want to blog

Legal Notices
Back to top