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How Two Marriage Equality Heroes Became Like Family To Each Other

Edie Windsor and her lawyer, Roberta Kaplan, tell the story of the first time their paths crossed.

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This week on The Tell Show podcast...

Edie Windsor and her lawyer, Roberta Kaplan tell the story of the first time they crossed paths, over 20 years before the United States v. Windsor ruling that paved the way for national marriage equality.

Edie Windsor and Roberta Kaplan were the plaintiff-attorney pair in the Supreme Court case that struck down the federal ban on same-sex couple's marriages.

Andrew Burton / Getty Images

Kaplan (left) and Windsor (center) worked on the case together for over three years, and remain close friends.

In 1991, Kaplan was referred to a therapist who dealt with "gay issues," Thea Spyer.

During their sessions, Thea Spyer offered Kaplan an example of the kind of fulfilling, loving same-sex relationship she was looking for: Spyer's own decades long partnership with a brilliant mathematician named Edie Windsor.


But Windsor and Kaplan didn't meet until 2009, when Kaplan took on the lawsuit over the estate tax Windsor owed after Spyer's deathβ€”the legal battle over the Defense of Marriage Act.


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