THEY HAD decided to marry before he left for the USA and nothing, not even a near fatal motorcycle accident which left him a quadriplegic, was going to stop them achieving their dream.
As the morning dawned, Skip would normally have cleaned his much ridden Fat Boy before heading off to the Vietnam Veterans Clubhouse in Kingston, a suburb of Brisbane, to join his mates for the annual ride into the city, and march to Anzac Square in the Vietnam Veterans Day Parade.
That wasn’t going to happen this year. Earlier Skip and seven other riders from the VVMC Qld Chapter had gone to join their American brothers for the ‘Run To The Wall’ in Washington; unfortunately, on the first day of the ride from Los Angeles to Washington, Skip had his accident that left him a quadriplegic, and saw him returned to Australia on a specially equipped Learjet with doctors and nurses in attendance.
So, on this morning, he was to remain in bed at the Spinal Unit of the Princess Alexandra Hospital while his mates did the usual ride into the city.
But, on a happier note, in the afternoon he was wheel-chaired to the VVMC clubhouse, The Bunker, for his wedding to his partner of three years, the beautiful Ljuba, sometimes referred to as the Russki. They had both decided to marry before he left on his ill-fated trip and nothing was going to stop them achieving their dream.
Weather-wise, it was a little overcast and a little on the cool side, but the clubhouse was all decked out for the wedding as the celebrant, VVMC members and their partners, friends, family and supporters waited for the couple to arrive.
After saying “G’day to Billy, his dog, whom he had not seen since leaving for America, Skip ‘drove’ his wheelchair up to the podium while Ljuba made the grand entrance in the traditional biker wedding style, on the back of a gleaming Heritage Softail. Everybody took their places and the wedding proceedings began.
After the wedding celebrant had spoken all her required words, Ljuba had some special words to read out to Skip; and he had asked Padre, one the club members, to read out his special thoughts to Ljuba. These certainly plucked at the heartstrings of some in the crowd as the Kleenex tissues appeared.
With the “I Do’s” exchanged and pronouncement of ‘Man and Wife’, congratulations offered and photographs taken, it was time for music, food and entertainment.
The ladies of the VVMC had worked hard in the kitchen as was evident by the mountains of good tucker being launched from there. Many thanks for your efforts, to all those concerned.
Thanks also to the President, Mutha, and all the VVMC members who helped make it a memorable day for Ljuba and Skip.
words by Incoming; pics by Jules