Bride Has To Celebrate Wedding with Mannequin Version Of Groom

Bride and groom walking on pavements

Photo: Getty Images

Christine Karmire a bride from North Carolina made the best of a tough situation after her groom got extremely sick with "severe food poisoning" on their wedding day.

She could've sat and sulked the rest of her wedding day but instead she turned a nightmare situation into something to smile about. She decided to continue the celebration of her big day alongside a mannequin version of her groom, Gannon Karmire, while he was sick in the hospital.

So, instead of canceling their nuptials altogether, Christine tells PEOPLE that she had her groom there in spirit: celebrating with what she affectionately calls "Stick Gannon," a rolling steamer with pool cues that was dressed in a suit, with Gannon's smiling face mounted at the top on an iPad.
"When we think back on our wedding, bittersweet is the first word that comes to mind," says Christine, 26. "We were so happy to finally have our friends and family together, but of course, it did not play out how we had imagined."
"We do believe that with the hand we were dealt, it could not have gone any better than it did," she adds. "We still felt loved and celebrated by everyone and are so appreciative of their support."

Their ceremony was this past Nov. 14th and shortly after Gannon, 28, woke up feeling ill.

"He wasn't feeling sick enough for us to contemplate seeing a doctor until about two hours before the ceremony was supposed to start, and then it got worse very quickly," she explains. "At that point, we were just nervous for his health and the status of the wedding was an afterthought."

The couple had initially planned to be married in September 2020 but of course due to the COVID-19 they couldn't.

So they ended up tying the knot with their immediate family in their backyard in July of 2020, then they rescheduled their nuptials for September 2021. But of course something else had to go wrong, just one week before the wedding, Christine tested positive for COVID-19 and once again, their date was postponed.

"All of our vendors were so gracious and accommodating," Gannon notes. "And we are so thankful to Brian from The Victorian for handling all of this for us while we focused on Christine getting healthy."

So when November finally came around and Gannon got sick, the couple wasn't going to let anything stop them from carrying on with their nuptials, no matter the circumstances.

Wanting to be sure that that her day was still special, Christine says Brian, one of the owners at The Victorian, came up with the idea for "Stick Gannon."

"He thought it would be good comic relief for everyone in attendance if I made a traditional reception entrance with 'Stick Gannon,' " she explains. "It was meant to lighten the mood and encourage people to enjoy both the company gathered and the already prepared dinner."

They truly didn't expect the guests to take to "Stick Gannon" — but as the night continued on, guest kept dancing and posing in photos with the makeshift groom mannequin.

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