This New York couple wasn’t going to let border restrictions stop them from having their Canadian family members at their wedding. With the help of their Border Patrol agent friend, Karen Mahoney and Brian Ray said “I do” at the U.S.-Canada border just so Mahoney’s 96-year-old grandmother in Quebec could be there to witness it.
The couple was planning to wait for non-essential travel restrictions to lift before having their wedding, but they couldn’t hold off any longer. “We didn’t want to wait and have a long engagement. We are so much in love that we couldn’t wait another day to be married,” said Mahoney to CBS News.
That’s when they enlisted the help of their childhood friend, a border agent they nicknamed “Border Brian,” to arrange a makeshift ceremony at the Jamieson Line Border Crossing between Quebec and New York.
Mahoney said Brian was off-duty at the time and gave the other border agents a heads up, so they could exchange their vows uninterrupted. He also made sure that all of the guests were made aware of the rules, that lines were not crossed, and that no items were exchanged between relatives on opposite sides of the border.
The setting wasn’t exactly romantic, but it meant the world to Mahoney and her grandmother. “She’s my only living grandparent, the only grandparent I’ve ever known, so it was very important for me for her to be there to watch the happiest day of my life,” she said to CNN. Her grandma later said that it was a moment she’d never forget.
“She was extremely excited,” Mahoney said to CBS. “We both cried.”
“I cried. It was good for me, because I knew how much it meant to her to have her parents and her grandmother here and see us exchanging vows,” added Ray. Honestly, we could cry too right about now.