PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -- Ed Watson, whose life was an example of how Proposition 8 has harmed members of the LGBT community, has died, reports the Courage Campaign Institute.
In a touching video that was posted on YouTube, Watson and Derence Kernek, his partner of over 40-years, share their story and how the many delays in the Proposition 8 trial have affected them.
Watson, who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, never got the chance to marry Kernek, a story that was the subject of a front-page Los Angeles Times profile on the subject earlier this year.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals first heard the appeal of Judge Vaughn Walker’s ruling striking down Prop 8 on Dec. 6, 2010. Since that time, the LGBT community has waited while the California Supreme Court reviewed the question of standing, and other issues.
"Words cannot express both the deep sadness for Ed and Derence as well as anger at the human toll of those who did nothing but love and care for each other for decades, then watched their rights stripped away by their neighbors at the ballot in November 2008 and a court system that, for people like Ed and Derence, worked too slowly, no matter which way it will eventually decide," said the Courage Campaign Institute in an online statement. "It is unfair. It is grossly unfair. And it is painful."
The Courage Campaign has posted a tribute to Watson on its Prop 8 Trial Tracker website, which will air today's hearing at 2 pm PST.
Visitors to the page are encouraged to post condolences to Kernek on the page, which Courage Campaign officials will ensure that he sees the comments.