Courtesy of: The Morning News
By: Rosalie Klein
An idea came to the loving couple, still honeymooners at heart, almost simultaneously, proving the old adage, “great minds think alike.” “Honestly,” confessed Geri, “we couldn’t think of anything we would want more than to be together with our children and grandkids on Aruba to celebrate this special occasion.”
John and Geri retired to Naples, on the west coast of Florida, some years past, and admitted they do not see their children, daughter Sheryl and her husband Michael, and son John and his wife Jodie, nearly as much as they would like, along with their respective children, Daniel and Dennis McCarthy and Olivia and Ethan Madeira. Their son and daughter still live in Massachusetts with their families, and “sometimes it just seems so far away.”
The progeny had only been to Aruba once, prior to this family reunion, and each agreed they are very much enjoying sharing this time with the family matriarch and patriarch, particularly for such a special occasion.
John went the extra mile, secretly arranging a renewal of vows on the beach at sunset, with which he surprised Geri only a day before their celebration. He had personally written poetic words recited, allowing each family member to participate.
Their children and their spouses administered the vows, reminding their parents “that marriage is a precious gift, a lifelong dedication to love and the daily challenge to love one another fully and freely.”
“With this understanding, do you, Dad/Mom, continue take Mom/Dad as your beloved wife/husband? Will you continue to be a tender and faithful husband/wife?” they asked their parents, to which John and Geri fervently responded, “I do.”
Even all the grandchildren were included in this special sharing, blessing the affirmation of their union with the wish “for the sun to bring you energy by day,” and “the moon to softly restore by night,” from Daniel and Olivia. Dennis asked “the rain to wash away your worries,” and Ethan concluded with “May you live the days of your lives in peach, love and happiness.”
One of the reasons this loving couple has been so dedicated to Aruba is because of the “extended Aruban family” that the staff of their favorite resort, the Divi-Tamarijn Mega All-Inclusive, has become since their very first visit. After their renewal of vows, the Madeira clan enjoyed a special celebration at the Paparazzi restaurant in the Tamarijn with a visit from one of their favorite staffers, Francis Ridderstap, who just had to stop by to wish this charming family a happy 50th wedding anniversary, and many more.