VOWS: Truly, Madly, Deeply
Leighton Williams, son of retired executive secretary Sheila Williams, and late hotel restaurateur Clinton Williams tied the knot with Gina-Kaye Tomlinson, daughter of civil engineer Clement Tomlinson and retired nurse Shirley Tomlinson, in a beautiful wedding ceremony at the University Chapel, Mona Campus, on November 24. Vows shares the couple's journey to the altar.
It was not the classic love-at-first-sight meeting for Leighton Williams, group IT administrator at FIMI Wireless Group of Companies, and Gina Kaye Tomlinson, head of customer services at Jamaica Public Service Company.
The two, unaware that destiny would lead them to the altar two years later, first met at a mutual friend's birthday party at Christopher's lounge in April 2010.
"We really didn't notice each other much until we met again the following month at Gina's birthday dinner," Leighton told Vows. "It was then that we struck up a conversation and a friendship formed."
Their first date saw the pair driving to the beach where they spent hours in light-hearted conversation. Remembering that defining moment, Gina shared: "He seemed to know exactly how I wanted to be treated without being told, and was willing to wait until I was ready for a relationship."
His patience won over Gina, and the pair embarked on an intense, eleven-month love connection. Away on a work assignment last year in Haiti, Leighton had an epiphany — life as he knew it would be far better with Gina in it — and so, he telephoned her without a moment's hesitation and proposed.
Their Big Day came months later on Saturday, November 24, and was witnessed by their nearest and dearest at the University Chapel. Gina, her hair pulled back in a bun, was a gorgeous vision to behold in a Patricia South-designed silk chiffon ivory gown as she made her way up the aisle on the arm of her proud father, Clement Tomlinson. The bridegroom, smartly attired in a twilight grey tuxedo from Beautiful Brides and Mr Tux, choked up at the sight of his bride; his best man Ryan Chung tactfully dabbing away his glistening tears.
Explaining the reason behind his spontaneous show of emotion, Leighton told Vows: "I was thinking about my supportive family and circle of true friends who wish me all the best...my mother who has instilled in me so many values, and especially how to cherish a woman's heart...and how I had found someone who had entrusted her heart to me."
Ahead of exchanging vows officiated by Reverend Roy Dodman, the couple performed a hand-binding ceremony signifying the joining of their hearts.
Guests heartily applauded when the two sealed their union with a kiss after being declared husband and wife.
The bridal party and guests headed to the upper St Andrew residence of dentist Overton Hutchinson, a close friend of the bride's family, for the reception.
Decorator Camille Dookie heeded the couple's directive to fuse their Indian, Chinese and Jamaican cultures as well as their mutual love of Harry Potter into her styling for the event. Chinese lanterns hung from the white tent's ceiling, place settings featured wooden chargers, and a vibrant orange backdrop set off the head table where the newly minted Mr and Mrs Williams sat.
After entering the reception to rousing cheers, the couple slow-danced to Sergio Mendez's Take This Love before slicing into their Suelan Chung-designed red velvet and fruit cake. Throughout the course of the evening, loved ones reminisced on their treasured memories of the newly-weds, and all wished them a bright future together.
Post-reception, the couple enjoyed a week-long honeymoon in St James between the Secrets Resorts and the Ritz-Carlton hotels.