Special couple gets dream wedding - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Special couple gets dream wedding

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July 15, 2005

Valdosta - It's the day Charles Phillips and Brenda Bates have always dreamed of, but never thought would come. "Our big day, the best day of our lives, we're getting married," said Charles.

In less than 24 hours, they'll be husband and wife. "It's been a dream of Charles' for the last four years, to meet somebody special and get married," said Tyra Creasy, Resident Home Manager.

And at a birthday party two and a half years ago, he found her. "I love her, and I think the world of her," said Charles.

Charles and Brenda will have the wedding of their dreams Saturday, thanks to a group called Normal Life. "We ask people if they could do anything, what would they want to do and then its our job to make it happen," said Rick Peterson, Dream Team Member.

A lot of people think that because of their handicap, mentally challenged people may not be capable of such a big step. But Charles and Brenda have been evaluated by their caseworkers, and even gone through marriage counseling to make sure they're ready for such a commitment. "Brother Alvin talked about when you get married, two become one," said Charles.

"It's been a long process, they've had their ups and downs just like any normal couple and they're as ready as they're ever going to be," said Creasy.

Normal Life workers hope Charles and Brenda will be an inspiration for other mentally challenged couples. "Everybody deserves a chance to get married, they just need someone to help them find that dream and go for it," said Creasy.

And this couple's love will prove that anyone can make it, with a little support and encouragement from others.

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