Married after 44 years

Linc and Bryan - Stephen Lee Sydney Same Sex Marriage Celebrant

I had the honour and pleasure of marrying Bryan and Linc, who after 44 years have finally been able to make their amazing relationship official, now that we have marriage equality in Australia.

What they have together is something we all aspire to, but few of us achieve. They first met in 1974 at a mutual friend's champagne lunch in Sydney. The strong connection between them was clear from the start. They became a couple after just a week and have never looked back.

Their relationship is based on a firm foundation of friendship, mutual respect and a deep understanding of each other. In Linc's own words, they have a very deep love for each other - respect and caring are two very important words in their lives, and they share a willingness to focus on the positives. Their love for each other has been a constant source of strength. They've led a very adventurous life, they have travelled widely and enjoyed success in their careers.

Getting married was something Linc and Bryan had never really considered until recent times, simply because it wasn't an option. They have witnessed many big social changes over the years; I wonder what their 1974 selves would think if they knew one day they'd be able to marry? It was something they knew they wanted to do as soon as the law changed, and indeed they were among the first wave of same sex couples in Australia to tie the knot.

BBC World News was there to film their wedding, which was held in their garden in Sydney, and they were surrounded by family and friends.

I'm currently busy marrying lots of same sex couples, and many have been together a very long time, just like Linc and Bryan. It's a wonderful vindication of the yes vote and the long-awaited and overdue decision to legislate for marriage equality in Australia.

I never forget any of the couples I marry, but every now and again, a couple makes a very special impression on me and I can definitely say these two will always be in my heart and mind.

As Linc himself said, "When life is so fragile, what else can you do but offer love?"

By Stephen Lee

Sydney Marriage Celebrant

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