A decision by a U.S. District Court judge to strike down a ban on same-sex marriage in California has elated the first same-sex couple to marry within the state.

Robin Tyler and Diane Olson married just over two years ago, when California first legalized same-sex marriage.

Some 18,000 couples followed in their footsteps over the next five months. But then California voters approved Proposition 8 -- a contentious piece of legislation that banned same-sex marriages within the state. It was soon challenged in court.

When Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker released his ruling Wednesday that Proposition 8 was a violation of the civil rights of gay and lesbian Americans, Tyler and Olson say they had different reactions to what they heard.

Tyler cried tears of joy, while Olson laughed in celebration after hearing the news.

"I just sobbed, I cried yesterday," Tyler told CTV's Canada AM during an interview from Los Angeles on Thursday morning.

"I was so overwhelmed with joy that a federal court would finally find that it's unconstitutional to deny marriage rights to same-sex couples. And Diane, of course, sat there and laughed."

Appearing alongside Tyler on Canada AM, Olson said: "I like to win."

"We have fought so hard for this. You know, I like justice, and we had our day," Olson said, explaining her reaction to the ruling.

Walker released a 136-page ruling that condemned the voter-approved ban on same-sex marriages as being rooted in "unfounded stereotypes and prejudices."

"Rather than being different, same-sex and opposite-sex unions are, for all purposes relevant to California law, exactly the same," Walker wrote in his ruling.

"The evidence shows conclusively that moral and religious views form the only basis for a belief that same-sex couples are different from opposite-sex couples."

Walker said he would be willing to wait for the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to make its decision on a appeal – which an umbrella group opposed to same-sex marriage filed Thursday -- before making his opinion final, which would require the state to stop enforcing the ban.

At present, same-sex marriages are legally permitted only in Massachusetts, Iowa, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire and Washington, D.C.

It is expected that the California case could go all the way the U.S. Supreme Court and Tyler said she is happy if it does.

"This will be historic," Tyler said. "The judge yesterday found that there was no rational basis to discriminate against same-sex couples or gay people, that they had absolutely not one compelling argument -- not one. And that it was just a matter of hiding behind religious beliefs in order to perpetuate discrimination, which they did here in the United States during segregation. It actually is a very similar argument that they have in court."

R. Clarke Cooper of the Log Cabin Republicans, an advocacy group that supports equal rights for gay and lesbian Americans, told Canada AM that both his organization and the wider gay and lesbian community strongly approved the ruling by the U.S. District Court judge.

"Obviously, I was thrilled, our membership was thrilled and many folks not only within the Log Cabin Republican organization but throughout the LGBT community were very happy with the ruling that came down yesterday on Perry v. Schwarzenegger, which is commonly known as the Proposition 8 case," Cooper said during a telephone interview from Washington on Thursday morning.

With files from The Associated Press