CHICAGO (WLS) --The first couple to be married in Cook County in 2017 didn't know cameras would follow their every move Tuesday morning. But after eight years together - and two of their four children together - Darnell Lane and Charlotte Passley decided it was time.
"It was just time for our kids to see us as a unit. Stop playing house and become house," Passley said.
"Life's too short. You know, you've got your soulmate, you might as well do it," Lane said.
The couple, both in their early 30s, have each been married before. But not with so much publicity.
They were not the first in line at the Vital Records Office in Chicago's Loop, but the couples before them decided to pass on the fanfare. As a result, the happy couple received the first marriage license in the county this year and several perks.
Lane and Passley were married immediately by Cook County Clerk David Orr, who also took care of their marriage license fee. Orr is the only county clerk in the state of Illinois with the legal authority to perform the marriage ceremony on the spot.
"It's fun for me, when you look at government today, all the problems and all the corruption and thievery and scoundrels and so forth," Orr said.
A number of local businesses donated gifts, including Loews Chicago Hotel, Michael Jordan's Steak House, iO Theatre, Eli's Cheesecake, Edible Arrangements and LaSalle Flowers. This has become a tradition in Cook County over the last 25 years.
When the couple left their home on Chicago's West Side to get in line before 9 a.m. Tuesday, they were unsure of whether they would be able to get married the same day. But they brought their rings just in case.
As far as their plans to celebrate?
"We gonna kick it!" Lane said.
"Yeah, we're gonna have a good time," Passley said.
Congratulations, love birds!