Search form

Scroll To Top
News & Opinion

Pennsylvania Gay Couple Finally Marry After Unusual Circumstance


Technically "father" and "son" by law, the two men have since dissolved their adoption and married.

Photo via USA Today/Matt Slocum, AP

After more than 50 years together, Bill Novak and Norman MacArthur, a gay couple in their 70s, were finally wed on Sunday. While same-sex marriage is becoming more socially and legally accepted, Novak and MacArthur's matrimony was long overdue.

The couple registered as domestic partners in New York City in 1994, but their partnership was not recognized in their home state of Pennsylvania. Without any state recognition, they needed to find a way to start planning their estate. "We were told when we started to look into this that hell would freeze over before Pennsylvania allowed same-sex marriage," MacArthur told the Associated Press.

Under advisement from a lawyer, Novak adopted MacArthur in 2000 to make their relationship legal. Though this was by no means a conventional solution, it provided the benefits they needed. Now that marriage equality has expanded to Pennsylvania, the two men, who were technically considered father and son, have since had their adoption dissolved.

As of last week, Novak and MacArthur were officially married as husband and husband. "The courtroom burst into applause. I burst into tears," MacArthur said. "They were certainly happy tears. After months of investigating ways that we could do this and finally having the decision coming down in our favor, I'm still walking 3 feet above the ground."

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Glenn Garner