Current Affairs

US: Lesbian who fought for same-sex marriage in Indiana dies

Nick Duffy February 8, 2015
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A woman who successfully sued for the recognition of her same-sex marriage in Indiana has died.

Niki Quasney, who suffered from ovarian cancer, successfully challenged the state of Indiana to recognise her marriage to partner Amy Sandler last year.

The couple married in Massachusetts, but lived in Munster, Indiana – and launched a challenge so that Sandler could receive survivor benefits as any opposite-sex spouse would.

US District Judge Richard Young ruled in April that there was no valid reason to deny the couple marriage rights – though the state continued to fight against same-sex marriage until October.

Her legally-recognised wife, her mother, and five siblings were by Ms Quasney’s side as she passed away, aged 38.

Attorney Paul Castillo of Lambda Legal – who represented the couple in the case – said: “Niki and Amy and their daughters became Indiana’s first family when they bravely joined Lambda Legal’s marriage case, which meant openly sharing very personal and painful parts of their journey together as Niki battled cancer.

“They brought this case and fought so hard because they loved each other and wanted their daughters to be treated with respect, just like any other family in Indiana.

“They also fought for all same-sex couples and their children in Indiana. They never wanted to be alone in recognition of their family.

“They knew that by coming forward they could help accelerate equality for all same-sex couples in Indiana by demonstrating the urgency of their need for equal dignity.”

Related topics: cancer, couple, Gay, Indiana, lesbian, marriage, niki quasney, recognition, Same-sex, terminally ill, US

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