County’s first same-sex license issued

By Alisa Boswell

CMI staff writer

aboswell@pntonline.com

Stephanie Reynolds and Annie Garza weren’t thinking about being trend setters when they applied for Roosevelt County’s first same-sex marriage license.

They just wanted to exercise their newly granted right by the state Supreme Court.

Alisa Boswell: Clovis Media Inc. Stephanie Reynolds signs her marriage license Monday afternoon in the Roosevelt County Courthouse in the presence of County Clerk DeAun Searl and her soon-to-be spouse, Annie Garza.

Alisa Boswell: Clovis Media Inc.
Stephanie Reynolds signs her marriage license Monday afternoon in the Roosevelt County Courthouse in the presence of County Clerk DeAun Searl and her soon-to-be spouse, Annie Garza.

“We’re not doing this to make anybody mad,” Garza said after receiving the license late Monday afternoon. “We just want to live our lives like anybody else.”

Reynolds, 36, and Garza, 46, have been together the last eight years, raising Reynolds’ four children.

“We’re not different from anyone else,” Reynolds said. “I’m mom; she’s dad and my kids even call her dad.”

A day after the Dec. 20 ruling, Roosevelt County Clerk Donna Carpenter and Deputy Clerk Janet Collins resigned, saying the law conflicted with their personal and Christian beliefs.

DeAun Searl, who issued the license, was selected last week to replace Carpenter.

The couple’s daughter, Mercedes Reynolds, came with the two women to obtain the marriage license.

“She’s been there for every moment. She is my dad,” Mercedes said of Garza, adding that Garza helped support her through college and anytime she had a problem when in high school or college, she went to “her dad” for guidance.

“I think it’s a good day in New Mexico,” she said. “I’ve waited for this day a long time when I could say my parents are married instead of just engaged or just together. It’s not about gay rights; it’s about human rights.”

Reynolds said the family is looking for someone to perform the marriage ceremony.

“Worse case scenario, our loving daughter has volunteered to get ordained, so she can perform it,” Reynolds said, smiling. “We’ve been planning this for a long time. We considered going out of state, but it’s expensive. It’s just easier to do it at home.”

The two women said they did not know until arriving at the courthouse Monday that they were the first same-sex couple in Roosevelt County to apply for a license, but they knew there was a chance they could be.

 

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