wo decades ago this week in 2004, Mary Bonauto, the chief attorney in the landmark case that secured marriage rights for same-sex couples in Massachusetts, celebrated alongside her clients, Robert Compton and David Wilson, as they exchanged vows. Compton and Wilson were among the pioneering couples to tie the knot on that historic day. Following a groundbreaking ruling in November 2003, which marked Massachusetts as the first state to legalize same-sex marriage, a six-month waiting period ensued. Despite facing legal challenges in the form of four lawsuits aimed at blocking such unions, none were able to thwart couples like Compton and Wilson from legally marrying. Bonauto, an attorney at GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) since 1990, admitted to being overcome with emotions at her clients’ wedding. Tears welled up even before the ceremony began, but the most poignant moment, she recalls, was when the minister pronounced the couple officially married. She emphasized that the state had not provided “constitutionally adequate” justifications for denying same-sex couples the right to marry, and clarified that the court’s role did not extend to addressing moral questions surrounding same-sex marriage. Bonauto noted that despite encountering some resistance, the decision garnered an overwhelmingly positive response. Following Massachusetts’ pioneering move in 2003, 36 states and Washington, D.C., subsequently legalized same-sex marriage. The culmination came in June 2015 when the Supreme Court declared remaining state bans on same-sex marriage unconstitutional.