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Sunday, December 29, 2013

"Just a Thought" Column continues in La Prensa of SA, 12-29

Just a Thought: Interesting Weddings pt. 4
By Steve Walker

In the past three columns I shared with you the reader about various weddings I have been privileged to perform during my tenure as a Justice of the Peace.

In the first column I shared about venues around San Antonio, in the second and third columns about crazy weddings I performed.

This is the final chapter in memorable weddings I was involved in. Some of them were so bizarre I still shake my head when I think about them. Doing so makes me chuckle or at least bring a smile to my face.

Allow me to share with the reader two more weddings that were unique to say the least.

In the first instance, an older man brought in his bride-to-be with him to “tie the knot.” What was outstanding about the situation was his opening statement after introductions before the ceremony. He brought with him a number of relatives and friends as well, who were cordial and laughing as we readied for the nuptials.

I would point out that over those years a number of those coming to get married were people who had previously walked down the aisle at least one time before. This is where it gets crazy.

He said to me in front of the crowd assembled, “oh by the way this is my seventh wife.” Accustomed to hearing all kinds of tales from those entering into solemn matrimony, I jokingly said, “like King Henry the 8th of England.” He retorted, “Henry only married six times!”

He then proceeded to inform me she was his sixth wife and his fifth wife as well! Now that caught me off guard as everybody in the courtroom laughed. At that point all I could do was join in the festivity.

Looking at the soon to be newly-weds it was obvious to me they both were really happy to take the vows again for the seventh time.

Moving on with the vows, when I got to the words, “Do you take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife,” I added the words “again, for real and for life.” The crowd broke out in laughter along with the bride, groom, and me.

It was fun to say the least.

The other wedding that was truly strange pertained to a young couple barely 21. The young man had completed his advanced training at Lackland Air Force Base earlier in the day and proceeded to drive himself and his bride to the courtroom for the ceremony. She had flown in from another state for his graduation and the wedding. They were high school sweethearts.

While I was talking with the bride, the groom was outside ensuring his uniform was in order. As I looked out the glass window into the parking lot, I noticed his seemingly irate parents showed up and grabbed him and threw him into the backseat of their car. They then sped off to who knows where.

Forty minutes later they came back and entered into the courtroom for the ceremony not too happy. The bride told me while they were gone, the parents made it clear that they did not want their son marrying her.

As I read the vows to the bride and groom, out of the corner of my eye I could see the parents seething with their arms crossed. Not a good sign.

At the part of the ceremony where I say, “Is there anybody here who can show just cause why these two should not be married,” I conveniently skipped over that part and on to the rest of the vows for fear they would object.

One completed, I quietly excused myself after signing the certificate and left.

And as always, what I write is “Just a Thought.”

Steve Walker is a Vietnam Veteran and former Justice of the Peace and Journalist.

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