Chantal Tamika Stewart wed Roger Hudson, fraud analyst at the Bank of America, on February 4 at the Caymanas Golf Club in St Catherine. Vows shares their story.
Roger Hudson received the ultimate Christmas gift in 2002 — an introduction to his future bride Chantal. The two had an immediate connection to each other and according to Chantal, they knew it was the start of "something special". However, the fact that Roger lived in the United States and was only visiting Jamaica at the time somewhat dampened the prospects of a relationship. But cupid would not be denied. When Roger returned to Jamaica in the summer of the following year, the pair decided to take a chance on love and attempted to have a long-distance relationship.
Travelling back and forth between the two countries was how they kept their relationship alive. After eight years together, Roger took a momentous decision. He had absolutely no intention of losing Chantal, and what better way to keep her in his life forever than to make her his wife? During one of Chantal's visits to Roger's Arizona home, he popped the question. Her response? A resounding "Yes!"
Kareen Cox, a friend of the couple, told Vows: "Very few people could have handled such a relationship, given the distance and the challenges that came with it. However, I was always sure they would have made it." The couple were engaged for seven months before getting married quietly in July of last year at a church in Gilbert, Arizona. However, Chantal and Roger felt that they owed it to family and friends to witness their exchange of vows.
The renewal ceremony of their wedding vows took place on February 4, 2012 at the Caymanas Golf Club in St Catherine. The venue was exquisitely styled in pink and green — the couple's favourite colours by Tara Hirst of White Light Events. There was a sense of déjà vu, as Roger watched Chantal walk up the aisle a second time to Adele's Make You Feel My Love. Clutching her bouquet of roses and lilies, Chantal couldn't wait to meet her groom at the altar. Soon after, the couple would again exchange vows, this time in front of officiating minister, the Reverend Father Franklyn Jackson.
The spectacular reception followed at the same venue. After the newly-weds shared their first dance as husband and wife to Brian McKnight's Still In Love, reggae band Raging Fyah took over, thrilling the audience with their latest hits. "It was an exciting day for us," Chantal told Vows. "Although we were already legally married, it was an amazing feeling to have had an actual ceremony in front of our family and friends. The ceremony was beautiful."
The honeymoon followed at the Grand Palladium Resort and Spa.