Mary Bonauto, the lawyer who argued the first case to legalize gay marriage in the U.S., says the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court's order has been transformative for the state's LGBT community.

Bonauto represented Hillary and Julie Goodridge and six other gay couples who had been denied the right to marry in Massachusetts.

On November 18, 2003, Massachusetts' highest court ruled that the Massachusetts Constitution “forbids the creation of second-class citizens.” The court added that the government “has failed to identify any constitutionally adequate reason for denying civil marriage to same-sex couples.”

Gay couples began marrying on May 17, 2004.

Bonauto described accompanying her clients to get their marriage licenses as a “mob scene.”

“There were anti-sniper people on the roofs,” she told Buzzfeed. “We had police escorts. And then the police said to us, 'You gotta hold hands and walk single file,' because we just couldn't get through the crowd.”

“The police were literally throwing people out of the way if they blocked us in any respect. It was incredible. The joy was just overflowing. It just was overflowing,” she added.

In an op-ed published Monday in the Boston Herald, Bonauto called the ruling “transformative” for the state's LGBT community.

“The effect has been nothing short of transformative for LGBT citizens of the commonwealth – married or not – whose state now treats them as full citizens, and who now can stand up before family and friends to make those vows of commitment and responsibility to one another if they so choose,” Bonauto wrote.

“Even as we faced down fierce and repeated attempts to undo the Goodridge ruling by litigation and constitutional amendments, ultimately involving every branch of government, that affirmation of 'dignity and equality' has lifted up so many here and across the nation.”

Bonauto added that without “the beacon of equality from Goodridge” other victories – including June's Supreme Court decision which led to the federal government recognizing the legal marriages of gay couples – would not have been possible.

“While we are still some distance from a ruling ensuring the freedom to marry nationwide, other states now need to deal with 'federally married' same sex couples and examine whether they want to continue discrimination against those couples for state purposes,” she wrote.