Carolina Bride

She said yes! - La Toya & Kester

Kester and I worked for the same company – Harley-Davidson Motor Company. We even have the exact same start date; however, Kester was based in Alabama and I was based in Milwaukee at the corporate office. We officially met at new employee orientation in March 2006. We remained friends for a while, and by July of that year, we began dating. Despite our distance from each other, we made frequent trips to see each other. It wasn’t until January 2009 that Kester was moved to the corporate office and we were FINALLY in the same state!Kester called me on Sept. 22, 2010, on his way home from work to ask me if I wanted to go to the mall. Naturally, I said yes. As we’re getting closer to the mall, I notice that Kester is not merging over to the turn lane. I asked him, “Where are we going? The mall is over there!” He told me that plans have changed and to chill out. He kept driving and pulled up to David’s Bridal. I asked him what we were doing there and he told me that he’s getting me a dress. However, when we walked in, the sales associate begins to show me wedding gowns. The entire time, Stephanie from Indigo Photography is snapping pictures as she’s hiding behind racks of clothing. I head to the fitting room and before I can completely undress, there’s a knock on the fitting room door. It’s Kester, holding a box from Nordstrom with a pair of shoes on top. He tells me to get dressed and be ready in 30 minutes. I open the box to find a gorgeous floor-length Adrianna Papall gown! I get dressed and exit the fitting room to find Kester gone! No one in the store seems to know – or want to tell me – where Kester went. He shows up wearing a tuxedo with a limo waiting outside. My phone begins ringing and Kester instructs me to answer all of my phone calls. The first call is from his Mom and sister Andrea. We have normal chitchat, but at the end of the phone call, they say, “What if Kester asks you to marry him today?” My response was, “Well, that would be weird!” His sister follows up to say, “Weird bad or weird good?” and naturally, I answer, “Weird good!” the next phone calls come from my mom, his cousin Mary my friend Denise, my sister Sherita, my friend Niki, my aunt Darlene, my friend Wokie and my friend Michelle. Every phone call ends with the same line: “What if Kester asked you to marry him today?” Now, by the third phone call I had an idea of what was going on, as Denise began to cry on the phone. But nothing prepared me for my 10th and final phone call from my dad. Kester actually called my dad while we were in the limo heading to the next location and hands me the phone. My dad tells me, while crying, that he approves of Kester and that he’s a good guy! Our limo pulls up to a beautiful mansion and a gentleman named Reini takes us to a private airstrip where a helicopter is awaiting us. Kester hands me a box to carry and we walk to the helicopter. Reini gives us – Kester, Stephanie and I – the safety briefings of the helicopter and I prepare to board, but Kester stops me. He tells me to open the box. I open the large box to find a small blue box, and as I open it, Kester says, “I know how much you like Tiffany earrings!” For a split second, I pondered if Kester would go to these lengths to present me some dang earrings! But I open the box to find a gorgeous engagement ring. Kester got down on one knee right on the airstrip and asked me to marry him. I said, “YES!” Reini then took Kester, Stephanie and I on an aerial tour of our new home: Charlotte!

LaToya and Kester will be married on Oct. 22, 2011.

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