Hospice Staff Help Recreate 77th Wedding Anniversary

Frankie King, 96, in her wedding dress. Source: USA Today

When the staff of St. Croix Hospice in Oelwein, Iowa, wanted to help two of their residents Royce and Frankie King celebrate 77 years of marriage, they asked what they thought would be a simple question, “Do you have wedding photos?”

Sue Bilodeau, the King’s daughter replied, “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. We didn’t have time to plan a big wedding and we didn’t have a photographer.’”

Seeking to recreate a rushed experience the staff of St. Croix designed to help transform the backyard of the King’s home into a vintage site for a 1940s-style wedding — complete with a photographer.

On the big day, Bilodeau helped her mother, Frankie, 97, put on a vintage wedding dress, while Royce, 98, dawned his Air Force uniform.

“They escorted my dad outside, sat him down and we put a little handkerchief around his eyes,” Bilodeau said. “We walked Mom down the back steps and across the yard, and then she stood in front of Dad, and I was able to take off his handkerchief. I said, ‘Are you ready to see your bride?'”

When Royce saw Frankie, he had “the biggest smile in the world.”

“And he didn’t stop smiling,” Bilodeau said.

St. Croix’s music therapist played some 1940s-era hits on his saxophone, as Frankie and Royce took photos embracing and kissing.

Here are some of the photos from the recreated celebration.

Source: USA Today