A federal judge on Monday ordered Cook County Clerk David Orr to issue a marriage license to a lesbian couple months before a law legalizing such unions is set to take effect in Illinois.

Vernita Gray, 64, and Pat Ewert, 65, filed a lawsuit Friday, arguing that they should be allowed to marry early because Gray is battling terminal cancer.

Jim Bennett, a close friend, told the Chicago Sun-Times: “Vernita is absolutely thrilled. When I told her the news, she wanted to get up and dance, if she could, but thought that wasn't such a good idea.”

The marriage law signed last week by Democratic Governor Pat Quinn takes effect on June 1. However, lawmakers are considering moving up the date to February.

A spokeswoman for Clerk David Orr told the paper that the couple could marry on Tuesday.

Gray, a retired victim's advocate with the Cook County state's attorney's office, and Ewert were among the first couples to enter a civil union in 2011.

“This case illustrates the cruelty of the wait before the marriage law goes into effect, and it's wonderful to give them relief and the understanding of what it is to be married before it's too late,” said Camilla Taylor, the couple's attorney.