Light truly sprang from darkness to make the wedding of Travis and Jamie Lynn Pfeiffer even more moving and memorable.
The couple recently went to the alter after having to scrap their original plans for a large and lavish, country club wedding in late May due to the coronavirus pandemic. Instead of being deterred, the Pfeiffers adapted, selecting a more intimate location, slashing the number of invitees and choosing an earlier date to make the dream of one special guest come true.
With 10 guests looking on, the former Jamie Lynn Blodgett and Travis Pfeiffer became joined in holy matrimony on April 21, under the carport at the Clyburn Street home of her mother, Dale Blodgett. That date was chosen for two significant reasons, one being the fact it was the birthday of Travis Pfeiffer’s younger brother, who perished in an automobile accident. It also helped assure the attendance of her grandmother, Joan Rogowski, 87, who was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer in February.
“She’s my last surviving grandparent and I am her only granddaughter and I know that she’d been longing to see me get married and I couldn’t imagine that day without her being there,” Jamie Lynn Pfeiffer said of Rogowski, 87, also of Marco Island. “It was just a really special day with many memories that will never leave us.”
The wedding’s timing took on added poignancy when Rogowski entered hospice care on April 23.
After getting engaged in October, the Pfeiffers established a guest list of 75 friends and family members for a May 23 wedding and reception at Kensington Golf and Country Club in Naples. But in March, the danger presented by COVID-19 had led to guest cancellations and ultimately, to the country club deciding, late that month, to shut down in response to the pandemic.
Jamie Lynn Pfeiffer said that around the beginning of April, she and her then fiancé began discussing moving up the ceremony date and holding it at the home of her mother, a longtime resident in the city, who is a motor vehicle clerk at the Collier County Tax Collector’s Marco Island office.
They also decided to approach Jamie Lynn’s mother Dale Blodgett about playing an active role in the wedding.
“I had the honor of marrying them, which was not the original plan,” Dale Blodgett explained. Blodgett can officiate at weddings as a Florida notary public. “It meant a lot that they both agreed that I could do that. Originally, they were just going to use a notary who’d married a friend of theirs. I’d always joked around, ‘Hey, I’m a notary. I can marry you.’ They decided that since it was going to be a small intimate thing that I was going to marry them.”
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) pandemic recommendations were much in evidence. As per CDC guidelines for social gatherings issued in March, attendance was limited to 10 guests, among them Jamie Lynn Pfeiffer’s father, Tom Blodgett. And social distancing was practiced.
The wedding festivities were also graced by the unanticipated contributions of a photographer and a violinist who volunteered their talents at no charge. And some much–needed topical humor was also part of the proceedings.
“We did a shoot with our photographer with toilet paper and Lysol, with Clorox wipes; with all the things that during the pandemic are so hard to get,” said Jamie Lynn Pfeiffer. “We invoked it to try to have a little fun with it and just be us and show our love toward each other. Even though things were not exactly the way they were planned in the beginning, everything turned out just the way they should have.”
A June honeymoon trip touring America’s Northeast into Nova Scotia’s Bay of Fundy on a Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines excursion also had to be scrubbed because of the pandemic. But the couple plans to rectify that once life returns to normal.
Dale Blodgett said her mother was extremely proud to see her granddaughter walk down the aisle.
“She was waiting,” added Dale Blodgett. “She wanted to see her get married and she did.”