Monday, December 12, 2011

52 Years Ago Today

Mom always told me that she wasn’t sure if it wouldn’t have been easier if she and Dad had taken the money spent for the wedding and eloped.  I’m sure it felt like nothing went right from one crisis to the next.   My parents were married 52 years ago on December 12, 1959.  Mom and Dad met in May, were engaged by October and married in December.  Although Mom and Dad shared 46 happy years together before Mom’s death in 2005…their wedding did not roll along smoothly.

Group photo of the Wedding party.
I’m sure as her wedding day dawned, Mom was unhappy that neither one of her uncles would be able to attend.  Jack was in retail and the Christmas season was impossible for him to leave and travel the long distance to Idaho for the wedding and Claude had to work.  As it turned out, her step father, Gwen was unable to be there either.  He owned a mill at Elk City, ID and he was notified that morning that someone had tragically been killed in a logging accident and that he was needed in Elk City.  So within a few hours of her wedding, she had no family member there to give her away.  My father’s uncle, Don Gage was pressed into service to fulfill the obligation.  He was only 8 years older than my father’s 19…so he was young for the job.

As Mom walked down the aisle with her stand-in escort, Mom told me that Dad was so white that he almost faded into the background of his white suit.  She used to smile and tell me that you shouldn’t put the bridegroom in white especially if they are nervous…she wasn’t real sure if a tan would have helped.  I know that as she walked down the aisle there were a lot of things she wasn’t very happy about.  Money was tight and so her mother insisted on making my mother’s wedding dress.  Despite the happy occasion, Mom never liked that dress.  However, I know that my father thought she was beautiful.

When Mom reached the end of her walk down the aisle, the wedding mass started.  As the priest began to bless the couple near the end with a sprinkle of holy water, Mom got a face full of water unintentionally.  As she tried to blink the water out of her face, the priest presented the happy couple.  Since Dad had forgotten to lift her veil, she hurriedly lifted it out of the way. As she walked back down the aisle with Dad – she felt a sudden tug on her dress.  The ring bearer had gotten tired and decided to take a ride down the aisle on Mom’s dress train.

The flower girl, Krista and Phil - the ring bearer who took a ride on Mom's train!
Mom and Dad honeymooned at a friend’s cabin near Wolf Lodge.  I think two of Dad’s sisters also honeymooned there.  Since all three marriages were long and relatively happy – there must have been something special about the cabin.  Mom used to tell me that despite their rocky beginning – Mom felt that she had a wonderful marriage to a wonderful man.  I know that Dad felt the same way about my mother. 

Mom & Dad cutting their cake.

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