SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Ty Redhouse knew enlisting in the U.S. Air Force would be an adventure. His service lasted more than eight years.
“I am actually very proud of my service,” he said.
But Redhouse for some time didn’t feel like his country was very proud of him. But things started changing two years ago when the the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy on gays in the military was repealed. They changed even more with Wednesday’s ruling striking down a section of the Defense of Marriage Act.
“This is a huge victory, and I can’t really put into words when I found out.”
The Supreme Court decision will not only allow the extension of benefits to same-sex couples with active-duty members, but also to veterans like Redhouse.
Michael D. Williams is the president of Sacramento Valley Veterans. he says the decision will likely allow same-sex spouses to be buried next to each other in veterans cemetaries, the extension of the G.I. Bill to spouses, and tax benefits.
“There’s a wide-reaching array of benefits that are going to make an impact over time for our service personnel and our veterans,” Williams said. “It puts the marker of ‘Yes, we are the same and we are no longer a second-class citizen.’”
For Redhouse, it’s a chance to make him and his partner, Marco, feel safer.
“I want to be able to let my partner know, you know, there are things that I can give should something happen to me as a vet.”