Five years ago, Edith Windsor married her longtime partner Thea Spyer in Toronto, after a 40-year engagement. When Spyer died in 2009, Windsor wasn’t treated as a survivor spouse, thanks to the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, leaving her with $600,000 to pay in taxes. So she sued. On Friday, the Supreme Court agreed to take up the case, which will decide DOMA’s constitutionality. Windsor, 83, moved to New York 60 years ago “to be gay.” But before that, she was a local gal.
Ms. Windsor grew up Edith Schlain, the youngest of three children, whose father lost his candy and ice cream store in Philadelphia and then his house in the Depression. She was smart, vivacious and sexy. Immediately after graduating from Temple University, she married Saul Windsor, a friend of her brother. She described her husband as “a big, handsome guy, one of the sweetest men in the world.” Within a year, she knew that through no fault of either of them, it was not what she wanted. [New York Times]