Weddings are usually joyful celebrations.
The wedding day of Dianna and Les Vickers, however, was one of sadness, joy, concern, elation, fear and relief.
Before the ceremony was set to begin, the couple was posing for photographs on their wedding day on July 16, 2011, at Idlewild Baptist Church in Lutz.
Les mentioned he was feeling lightheaded due to his diabetes.
But before the wedding party could retrieve a chair for Les to sit on, he fell backward and hit his head on the floor.
EMS was called and Les was transported to the hospital, where the couple hoped for a quick treatment — to enable Les to head back to church for the wedding.
Unfortunately, Les had suffered a brain bleed and could not be released.
Because they were planning a traditional wedding, Les initially had not seen Dianna in her gown.
“The story I like to tell is that when I saw her for the first time in her wedding dress for the pictures, I was so swept off my feet that I fell straight down and banged my head,” Les said.
When asked what he wanted to do about the ceremony, Les said: “Today is supposed to be my wedding day and that’s what I want to do. We’re going to get married right here in the hospital.”
Dianna returned to the church, where she walked down the aisle and the pastor performed the preliminary parts of the wedding service.
Then, Dianna and her bridesmaids, along with 40 guests, motorcaded to the hospital where she and Les were married while he laid in his emergency room bed.
The guests waited in the emergency room area to congratulate the couple.
Les eventually spent five days in the ICU before being discharged.
Les and Dianna have celebrated their anniversary day for the past nine years by having lunch in St. Joseph’s Hospital-North’s Twigs Café.
Dianna has been at the hospital much more frequently during the past three years, helping out as a volunteer.
Occasionally, she said, she runs into team members that remember or have heard about her wedding day back in 2011.
It was not what one would call a traditional wedding day, but a decade later, Dianna and Les are still going strong.
Published August 25, 2021