Groom finds out he’s getting married – minutes before the wedding

By Jana van der Merwe
15 February 2017

A decade after a couple said their vows in a rush so that they could return to London they finally had their dream wedding.

A couple finally had their dream wedding – a decade after getting married in a rush so that they could return to London.

But the groom was the very last to find out about it, and mere minutes before the ceremony.

Quenton (42) and Chrizelle (29) Roberts of Standerton in Mpumalanga recently confirmed their vows again in the presence of family and friends. But Quenton only found out upon arriving at the wedding (on Saturday 11 February) that he was the groom.

Quenton and Chrizelle met in London in 2005 through her brother, Pierre Louw.

“Quenton and Pierre worked together on London’s Underground [the subway system],” Chrizelle says.

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Before long she and Quenton were a couple, but two years later her visa expired. The student visa which she then applied for, was declined.

A holiday to South Africa had already been planned, but Chrizelle wouldn’t be able to return to London with Quenton.

They landed in South Africa on 9 February 2007 and a pastor married them the very next day at Chrizelle’s mother's house in Roodepoort, Gauteng.

“We married on the spur of the moment,” Chrizelle says.

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The couple returned to England after the wedding and lived there for four years. Their two children, Daniël (9) and Melinda (7), were both born there.

Chrizelle_&_Ouenton_1 Photo: Cornel du Toit from WhyPink Creations.

In 2011 the couple returned to settle in South Africa. “We always wanted to have a proper wedding, but financially there was always something more important to see to.”

One day last year Chrizelle, a nail technician, was chatting to a client about her upcoming wedding when Chrizelle realised just how easy it would be to have a wedding of her own.

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She planned everything without breathing a word to Quenton and on the big day, a day after their anniversary, Quenton thought they were attending the wedding of one of her clients.

He was under the impression that Chrizelle was working that morning and they would meet up at the wedding. When he arrived at Waterfront Lodge in Standerton at 14:00, he heard for the first time that he was in fact the one getting married that day.

He was overwhelmed and kept saying that he couldn’t believe it. He couldn’t stop saying how beautiful his wife looked.

Chrizelle says everything “went well” with the emotions, but when Daniël and Melinda walked to the altar ahead of her, Quenton burst into tears.

Another surprise still awaited Quenton: Last September his father-in-law, Chris Louw (58), found Quenton’s old wedding ring lying in the grass on his farm. Quenton had lost the ring there years before.

Chrizelle_&_Quenton_3 Photo: Cornel du Toit from WhyPink Creations.

They kept the find a secret from Quenton and Chrizelle until the day of the wedding. Her stepmother, Alice (58), had the ring cleaned in the meantime.

The morning before the wedding Chris told his daughter that he had something "old" to give them – in reference to the traditional wedding adage of "something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue".

Chrizelle and Quenton were overjoyed. “It was absolutely meant to be!” Chrizelle says.

Chrizelle_&_Quenton_4 Photo: Cornel du Toit from WhyPink Creations.

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