Australia’s Sydney Harbor Bridge sees first same sex wedding

SYDNEY (Reuters) - They met in passing while trying to lose weight but on Thursday Australian men Warren Orlandi and Pauly Phillips made history by becoming the first same sex couple to get married on top of the Sydney Harbor Bridge.

The couple took their vows in front of family and friends gathered on the structure dubbed the “coat hanger”, 134 meters (439 feet) above the city’s main harbor, two days before the 40th anniversary of the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras.

The wedding is a fitting personal milestone for Orlandi especially. When he began losing weight in 2013 he was more than 370 kgs (815 lbs) and set himself the goal of being fit enough to climb the famous bridge.

He ultimately lost more than 250 kgs (551 lbs).

Australia became the 26th nation to legalize same-sex marriage in December 2017, a watershed moment in a country where some states held homosexual activity to be illegal until twenty years ago.

(This version of the story has been refiled to fix punctuation in third paragraph)

Reporting by Stefica Nicol Bikes, Editing by Byron Kaye and Michael Perry