When Carol Stevenson fell and fractured her hip at her home in Lexington on Friday, it interfered with her plans in a big way.
Stevenson, 67, was scheduled to marry her fiance, Everett Conyers, 73, of Nicholasville, on May 10.
She underwent surgery at Baptist Health Lexington on Saturday, and she should be able to be up and around in a few weeks with the help of some physical therapy, according to a hospital news release.
But in the meantime, Stevenson needed someone to take care of her at home.
Conyers said he was the man for the job, but because of the couple’s Christian faith, they did not feel right about living together before marriage.
So on Monday afternoon, they solved that problem.
With a handful of church friends and hospital staff gathered around, the couple said their vows in the hospital chapel. It also happened to be Conyers’ birthday.
“Being able to marry her is the best birthday present I’ve ever received,” Conyers said in the release.
Retired Fayette Circuit Court Judge James Ishmael Jr., who is also the couple’s Sunday School teacher, performed the ceremony. Jim and Carolyn Ball, who introduced them, were matron of honor and best man.
“I had a big primp party in the room” with an occupational therapist and some girlfriends there to help, Stevenson said in an interview Tuesday. “It was just every bit like a bride would do if she were at home. It was incredible.”
The hospital’s dietary services provided a wedding cake, and then the couple settled back into Stevenson’s room to wait for her to be discharged.
She went home on Tuesday, with her groom at her side.
Interestingly, Stevenson said, her accident happened because of plans for the wedding.
She said she had been having trouble choosing a bridal veil, and a friend had dropped some off for her to look at several days ago.
When Conyers stopped by, Stevenson said she had just gotten home herself when she remembered the bag of veils and went to get them.
“I was so excited that I came flying through,” and, still in her stocking feet and having taken her rugs up to be washed, she slid on the hardwood floor and fell.
“Had he not been here, I could not have gotten to a phone,” she said. “God has always protected me when I really needed it the most.”
The couple have been engaged since Thanksgiving, and they still plan to have the wedding ceremony they had already planned for May 10 at the Church of the Savior in Nicholasville.
In the meantime, Stevenson said she’s feeling good as she begins her recovery.
She said it’s “a real blessing that you’ve got a partner by your side.”
And then she added, “I don’t think he thought those vows ‘in sickness and in health’ were going to start immediately.”