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THE WEDDING DAY JUNE 13, 1999

LAURA CHECKETT AND JAMES HERR

WE GOT UP EARLY, THE SUN WAS SHINING AND IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL DAY.

JUST BEFORE WE LEFT, WE TOOK A MINUTE TO CUT A WHITE ROSE THAT HAD BLOOMED FOR THE FIRST TIME JUST IN TIME FOR THE WEDDING, AND TOOK IT WITH US.

WE PACKED THE CAR WITH ALL OF THE PARAPHENALIA WE NEEDED TO GET READY FOR THE DAY. BRAD AND RICK HAD THEIR TUXES AND A FEW SNACKS. AS WE WERE DRIVING TO THE ELKS, LAURA NOTICED THE BLUE, CLOUDLESS SKY AND SAID:
"GOD MUST HAVE KNOWN IT WAS MY DAY."

WE ALL AGREED.
WE ARRIVED AT ABOUT 9:20 AND NOTICED THAT SEVERAL PEOPLE WERE ALREADY PARKED IN THE LOT INCLUDING JAMES' CAR. THEY WERE INSIDE GETTING READY. LAURA WENT TO THE DRESSING ROOM AND HER BRIDESMAIDS TOOK OVER THE SUPERVISION OF GETTING HER READY. SHE PUT ON HER DRESS AND VEIL, FUSSED WITH HER HAIR AND MAKEUP UNTIL SHE GOT IT JUST RIGHT.

THEN, WE SET UP A PHOTO OP FOR THE FIRST VIEWING OF THE BRIDE BY THE GROOM.
BY NOW, JOHN HAD ARRIVED AND STOPPED IN TO SAY HELLO TO HER AND SHE GOT TEARS IN HER EYES.

JAMES WAS INSTRUCTED TO STAND WITH HIS BACK TO THE AISLE AND WAIT FOR HER TO JOIN HIM. HE WAS OUT ON THE DECK AND SHE WALKED DOWN THE AISLE AND JOINED HIM. WHEN SHE SPOKE TO HIM, HE TURNED AROUND AND THEY CLUTCHED EACH OTHER AND WEPT HAPPY TEARS FOR A LONG MOMENT. WHEN THEY HAD RECOVERED A LITTLE, THE PHOTOGRAPHERS TOOK OVER AND POSED THEM IN VARIOUS PLACES ALL AROUND THE GOLF COURSE TO TAKE FORMAL PHOTOS.

BY THIS TIME MOST OF THE OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS AND ATTENDANTS HAD ARRIVED AND MORE PICTURES WERE TAKEN WITH EVERYONE. AS THESE PICTURES WERE BEING TAKEN THE FLOWERS ARRIVED, THE CAKE WAS BEING SET UP AND THE CATERER WAS GETTING THE BUFFFET, TABLES, ETC READY FOR THE RECEPTION. BRAD SET UP HIS VIDEO CAMERA TO TAKE A STATIONARY VIDEO SINCE LAURA HAD TOLD HIM HE NEEDED TO BE SITTING WITH THE FAMILY. BOTH OF THE BOYS WERE ALL DRESSED UP IN THEIR TUXES AND LOOKED SPECTACULAR. THEY BOTH WANTED TO KEEP IT.

AT ABOUT 11:30 THE WEDDING PARTY RETIRED TO THE DRESSING ROOMS FOR A LAST MINUTE TOUCH UP AND RELAXING. BY NOW CORT BRUMFIELD, THE MINISTER, HAD ARRIVED AND WAS PREPARING THE INFORMATION FOR THE LISCENCE AND GUESTS WERE STARTING TO ARRIVE. AT EXACTLY NIGH NOON, THE BRIDAL PARTY LINED UP TO GO DOWN THE AISLE. THEY WALKED SLOWLY DOWN AND TOOK THEIR PLACES. AS LAURA AND JOHN AND I STARTED DOWN THE AISLE EVERYONE STOOD UP AND WE WERE ALL THREE FIGHTING A LUMP IN THE THROAT. AS JAMES AND LAURA SAW EACH OTHER THEY BOTH HAD TEARS IN THEIR EYES AND HAD TO SHARE A KLEENEX THAT I HAD GIVEN HER AS WE WALKED DOWN.

THE CEREMONY CONSISTED OF A GREETING, EXCHANGE OF VOWS AND RINGS AND LIGHTING OF THE UNITY CANDLE ACCOMPANIED BY A SPECIAL SONG THAT JAMES HAD PICKED OUT. WHEN THEY RETURNED TO THEIR PLACE, CORT PRONOUNCED THEM HUSBAND AND WIFE AT 12:24 P.M. AND INTRODUCED THEM TO THE AUDIENCE AS:

"MR. AND MRS. JAMES HERR"

THEY WALKED BACK UP THE AISLE FOLLOWED BY THE WEDDING PARTY AND THEN LAURA AND JAMES CAME BACK TO THE FRONT TO DISMISS THE FAMILY MEMBERS. AFTER THAT, THEY FORMED AN IMPROMPTU RECIEVING LINE AS THE GUESTS ENJOYED THE BEAUTIFUL SURROUNDINGS AND EVENTUALLY THE VERY TASTY BUFFET.

AT ABOUT 2:00 THEY GATHERED AROUND TO CUT THE CAKE AND BOTH DABBED THE OTHER ON THE NOSE WITH FROSTING. THERE WAS THE TOSSING OF THE BOUQUET AND THE GARTER AND THE FIRST DANCE AS A MARRIED COUPLE. OTHERS JOINED IN FOR DANCING.

AT ABOUT 3:30, LAURA WENT TO CHANGE INTO HER WHITE SHORTS OVERALLS AND PALE YELLOW T-SHIRT.
BY NOW, MANY OF THE GUESTS, HAD LEFT, BUT JAMES AND LAURA STAYED UNTIL AT LEAST 8:00 AND VISITED WITH SOME OF THE GUESTS WHO STAYED ON. SOME OF US WENT OUT FOR PIZZA ABOUT AND 8:00 AND FINALLY WENT HOME ABOUT 9:30 TO UNWIND. I HAD BROUGHT HOME FLOWERS AND CAKE AND SOME OTHER THINGS THAT THEY DID NOT NEED THAT NIGHT AND J/L STOPPED BY TO GET THEM THE NEXT MORNING AND WE LOOKED AT THE VIDEO THAT BRAD HAD TAKEN. SOME OF US MET AT JAMES' MOTHERS' HOUSE TO OPEN GIFTS MONDAY NIGHT AND THEY LEFT TUESDAY FOR
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