Clela Rorex gasped when she heard the news Thursday.
A judge had refused to stop Boulder County from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. And shortly thereafter, Denver's county clerk followed suit, and began authorizing gay marriages in the Mile High City.
"Oh my gosh," she said. "Oh my gosh. That's great. I am so happy."
Rorex made Colorado history in 1975, when, as Boulder County's clerk and recorder, she issued marriage licenses to six same-sex couples, allowing the first gay marriages in state history.
She ultimately complied with the then-attorney general's order to stop.
On Thursday, Rorex, now 70, said her decision in 1975 shaped her entire life. She hopes that one day it will seem unremarkable that gay couples can marry.
"It's always been there in so many ways," she said. "Relationships I couldn't have with people who believed otherwise. Jobs I didn't get. The mockery that was made.
"I knew I made the right decision, but in some ways I grew into the decision as the gay community decided for themselves that they wanted to marry."
She applauded current Boulder County Clerk Hillary Hall's decision, after nearly 40 years, to once again issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
"I am truly at a loss for words," she said. "I am so happy for Hillary that she could start this again and can continue and we don't have to keep repeating history. It's such a waste of time and taxpayers' money for state officials to keep defending this.
"I hope this issue just becomes part of the pattern of society," she said. "It won't be something that I or anyone has to keep interviewing about and defending for years to come."