Volunteer Flower Girls Show Up For Marriage Equality Duty In New York


Last month, the New York state legislature legalized same-sex marriage and yesterday the first same-sex couples were happily married all across the Empire State. Steve Landis and Julie Irwin brought their cute twin daughters Emily and Sophie to Brooklyn’s Municipal Building and Borough Hall so that they could act as volunteer flower girls for any couples getting married. What is most precious about this gesture is that the family didn’t even know anyone getting married … they just did this out of the kindness of their hearts. Click below to meet this beautiful family.

Steve Landis and Julie Irwin … brought their 4-year-old twins Emily and Sophie to Brooklyn Borough Hall this morning to be flower girls for whoever might need them. They don’t even know anyone getting married today! Aw. Update, 11:52 p.m.: A lot of people were wondering whether the girls were in any weddings today; turns out they were! From their father Steve:

We went with our 4 year old twin daughters this morning to serve as volunteer flower girls at Brooklyn’s Municipal Building and Borough Hall. We didn’t know anyone getting married but thought it would be fun and interesting. It was very exciting and emotional for all. As adults, we view marriage equality as our generation’s civil rights struggle and wanted to be there at the making of history and to have our daughters watch and participate in this very special occasion. From their perspective, we explained that yesterday only boys and girls could marry. But today, now boys can marry boys, and girls can marry girls. They understood what we told them and woke up this morning and asked if today was the day for the weddings. They had a great time serving as flower girls.

We arrived at Brooklyn Borough Hall at 845am. Given the size of the crowd, we weren’t sure if the girls would get picked but we took lots of pictures with couples. We took photos with a male couple for their ceremonial photos, along with Borough President Marty Markowitz. Near the end, a very nice male couple asked them to join in for their wedding ceremony in Borough Hall. It was the female minister’s first ever wedding (she had just been ordained) and I served as a witness. The minister wanted a photo with the “Mazel Tov & Many Nachas” sign, which was pretty amusing. Most importantly, we very much appreciated the male couple allowing us to participate in their wedding and were honored to be a part of their special day. It was an extraordinary moment to see such joy, which was highlighted by their getting so emotional at the end.

I can’t even … this is the most precious, most beautiful thing I’ve heard in a long time. I’m not even kidding you, when I read this in the Village Voice, I started to tear up. Despite all the horrible hate in the world, we must never EVER forget that there is even MORE LOVE in the world. This kind gesture was just so simple and yet so loving. I simply had to share this family’s story with all y’all. These little girls (and their amazing parents) just warmed my heart … I hope they warm yours too.


  • trish

    This put such a big smile on my face. Thanks for sharing!

  • Kayla

    I love this family. There really is good in this world :)

  • KiTX

    =) Love it, what a great family and a great way to celebrate the happiness of so many deserving couples!

  • Mr. Gyllenhaal

    Seriously what a great story!! So damn cute, I would have totally let them be my flower girls.

  • kerirulz

    This is amazing! Seeing pictures from yesterday and hearing stories like this gives me hope amongst all of the negative and awful things happening around the world.

  • Shannon

    Wow.. just wow.. That was a beautiful story :) Thanks for sharing! It’s hard sometimes to read the news seeing all the sadness and hatred, which is why I sadly avoid anything news related most days.. But this just reminded me of all the good that is out there!. Something we must all never forget.

  • Justin

    I’m proud to say that Sophie and Emily are students in my preschool classroom. They are truly wonderful and special girls and I’m touched not just by their family’s supportive gesture but by all the goodwill being expressed for them online.

  • Amy

    I like you Trent started to tear up when reading this story. The parents should be commended for the fact that they are teaching their children to be accepting of everyone. If only more people were this open minded.

  • Wow what a fantastic way to teach acceptance and love! This makes me have hope for the next generation. It’s basically what my parents did with my siblings and I, and it worked then too! :)

  • melissa

    i.love.this. it restores my hope and faith in mankind!!

  • Jerry

    Sparkle shoes!

  • krissy

    What a lovely story! That is so sweet. I bawled watching the footage on the news. There was a female couple that had been together for 35 YEARS, and to think that they finally are getting the chance to marry!

    There was another female couple that was on the news, and they were soooo tiny and elderly. It just broke my heart to think of how many couples like them never got the chance before one of them passed away, their possessions reflecting a lifetime together being broken up by property laws…

  • Mee

    Truly a touching story :)

  • Anon
  • EmCee

    This made me SO happy! I participated in our towns Pride Parade on the weekend, to show support to my gay friends who were also participating, and seeing people holding homophobic signs made me so sad! This story definitely reminds me there are people in the world who care about EVERYONE!

  • Whoo hoo! Go Landis Family! Those are my girls – I’ve been teaching them for a year and a half now. Awesome family!

  • Green Is Good

    *Wipes eyes* How do spell “Verklempt”? Am I in the ballpark? Tawk amongst yourselves.