An elderly couple in Iowa was able to ring in their wedding anniversary in the most memorable way possible. The then-97-year-old bride who had no gown on her wedding day finally donned one 77 years later at her reenacted marriage ceremony.
There is nothing more beautiful than witnessing the grand union of two people deeply in love with each other. This is why the staff at St. Croix Hospice in Iowa was indeed fortunate to have experienced the emotional reunion of Frankie King and her husband.
King wed her husband, Royce, on September 16, 1944. At the time, she didn’t have a gown to wear on her big day. However, she finally got to don a gorgeous vintage white gown for her wedding ceremony organized by the hospice staff on September 24, 2021.
77 Years of Togetherness
The reenacted wedding was filled with countless emotional moments, and the entire hospice staff couldn’t help gushing at the lovely couple. Henry Michaelson, a photographer and staff member at the St. Croix Hospice, shared her thoughts on the occasion:
“It was so hard to keep from crying behind the lens as I got to witness the emotion with this beautiful couple, and the love and compassion that their team poured into preparing this event for them.”Advertisement
Also present at the occasion was the couple’s daughter, Sue Bilodeau, who assisted her mother in getting ready. King’s then-98-year-old husband stood beside a makeshift altar decorated with flowers as he waited for his beloved bride in his Air force uniform.
The reenacted wedding event had come to pass after the hospice staff had asked the elderly couple about their wedding pictures. King’s daughter, Sue Bilodeau, explained how her parents never got to celebrate a grand wedding:
“Mom had mentioned, ‘We got married on a two-day notice while Dad was just on a short leave… before he went overseas in World War II. And we didn’t have time to plan a big wedding…”Advertisement
King and Royce had been receiving care and support from St. Croix Hospice at their Oelwein home. A few weeks before their wedding, the hospice staff decided to give their backyard an impressive makeover, turning it into a 1940s-style wedding venue.
The Light of Love
The couple’s music therapist made the occasion even more worthwhile by playing 1940s hit tunes on his saxophone and guitar. Another staff member at St. Croix Hospice, Kacie Derr, remembered the memorable occasion:
“The light in her eyes — I wish everyone could have seen it. She told me she felt so beautiful.”
Royce and King lovingly gazed into each other’s eyes, hugging and kissing as they posed in front of the archway adorned with flowers. Bilodeau added that when her dad saw her mom, he had the biggest smile in the world, and he didn’t stop smiling.
The Kings, who had two children, four grandchildren, and several great-grandchildren, relived the most special day in their life surrounded by many well-wishers. Their sweet reunion was also adored by netizens, who were quick to share their loving comments.
One user added: “Breathtaking moments captured in so many ways (sic).” A second user shared: “This is one of the sweetest things I have seen. Thanks to hospice and all involved for making this their special day. Brought tears to my eyes. Lovely!!”
Another one appreciated the hospice staff’s kind gesture: “What a beautiful couple! Thank you to the Hospice team for giving them such a treasured day!” Sadly, Royce passed away on February 2, 2022. Rest in peace.