Traverse City Record-Eagle

March 14, 2013

Tribal chairman to OK same-sex marriage


---- — HARBOR SPRINGS (AP) — The chairman of a northern Michigan Indian tribe says he’ll sign a same-sex marriage bill Friday, then preside at the wedding of two men.

The legislative body of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians voted 5-4 on March 3 to amend the Harbor Springs-based tribe’s laws to allow same-sex marriages. Tribal Chairman Dexter McNamara said he will sign the bill Friday morning.

“There should not be a dividing line and we should all be able to seek a good life,” McNamara said in a statement.

McNamara then plans to officiate at the wedding of two of his longtime friends, Tim LaCroix, 53, and a member of the tribe, and Gene Barfield, 60.

LaCroix told the Petoskey News-Review that arrangements for the wedding remained undecided days before the ceremony.

“We ordered some wedding cupcakes and that is about it,” he joked.

At least two other U.S. Indian tribes recognize gay marriage.