On November 18, it was back to England for the wedding of dear friends
Kathy & I had first met Ken in 1997 when I moved into the same Ascot apartment building as he when I did my 18 month posting in the UK.
Ken is a native Australian who has lived much of his life in England. As part of the Greatest Generation, he served as an aviator in the Royal Australian Air Force in World War II and retired as a Qantas airlines 747 Captain. When I met Ken back in 1997, a fast and firm friendship developed that I am most proud of. He is one of my lifes personal heroes.
Barbara is English by birth, but spent much of her adult life working supporting the Diplomatic corps from Nigeria to Hong Kong - with many stops in between. He, and Barbara, are truly exceptional people.
Ken had been widowed since 2000 and in 2003 he met lovely Barbara who had been widowed herself many years earlier. From their chance meeting walking their dogs, they soon fell in love and their ensuing courtship culminated with their marriage at the Windsor Guild Hall - where you may recall, Prince Charles and Camilla were married earlier this summer.
I was honored to be Ken's Best Man. Kathy & I were overjoyed to go to England for the Ceremony and share in their big day. On Friday, the wedding was held at 4:00 pm at the Windsor Guild Hall with a reception following at the Berystede hotel in Sunninghill.
Picture top left is of Ken & Barbara signing the Register in the Guild Hall which is the legal document registering their marriage. Picture upper right is of the lovely couple at their reception. Picture lower left is of Ken and I at the ceremony after I brought the rings forward. Picture lower right is Kathy with Ken Following the wedding. The last picture on bottom being a snap of the magnificent Windsor Guild Hall.
Other than the Wedding Couple, Kathy & I did not really know any of the other friends and family. However, by the end of the reception we felt we had made 40 new friends that we would love to see again. Great people - every one of them. Kathy and I stayed in England for almost a week.
Following the wedding we spent the weekend in London as Kathy ravaged most of the shops on Oxford Street. We had a great time revisiting many of the shops, sights & restaurants that we frequented back when we lived there.
As for Ken and Barbara they headed off on a week long honeymoon to Portugal. Following that they will return to their home in Sunnignhill, a suburb of London.