By: Angela Wendler
An Arizona military man married his partner of 11 years at midnight Tuesday when the "don't ask, don't tell" policy was officially repealed.
Navy Lt. Gary Ross, 33, and Dan Swezy, 49-year-old civilian, traveled to Vermont in the Eastern time zone, in order to wed at the first possible moment after the ban was lifted, reported the Associated Press.
The "don't ask, don't tell" military policy had been in effect for the last 18 years. President Barack Obama calls the repeal a "tribute to all the patriots who fought and marched for change, " reported the Minnesota Daily.
Many men and women, like Ross and Swezy planned to celebrations to commemorate the end of the ban.
Obama signed the repeal for "don't ask, don't tell" on Dec. 22, but he held the order from going into effect until he decided that the military was ready for the change, reported the Minnesota Daily.
The military has been preparing for the repeal by holding courses to prepare their soldiers to handle situations that they are not accustomed to, such as seeing a same-sex couple kiss upon returning home.