Villas of Shelby Senior Living residents hear wedding bells.
When John Sohlden moved into the Pine Ridge Villas of Shelby Senior Living in the spring of 2015, he quickly set about making new friends. When he joined the weekly happy hour, he found a table of friends to visit with — one of whom was Felicia Dulecke. The pair found comfort in each other’s company and began to spend more and more time together.
John enticed Felicia to come out of her shell. The couple shared meals, happy hours, and movie nights, and they attended singing group together once a week. Neighbors smiled to see the couple holding hands as they grew closer.
On Friday, August 14, 2015, Tonya Wilson, Spectrum Retirement Senior Director of Fun, visited the dining room and found Felicia grinning from ear to ear as she held out her hand to show off a diamond ring.
“John proposed, and I said ‘yes!’” she said. The couple was planning a wedding for just two weeks from that day. When Wilson asked why they planned to wed so soon, Felicia responded, “We don’t have time to wait.” Felicia’s niece, Theresa, was excited to help, and she took Felicia dress shopping that very day.
The day of the ceremony, Right at Home® senior care donated a bouquet of flowers for the bride, and Felicia walked down the aisle to her groom while the “Wedding March” played in the background. The wedding was performed by Father Don Sopiak, fellow resident at the Villas. After the ceremony Father Don announced that he checked his calendar and has many Saturdays available in the event anyone else plans on getting married at the Villas. He went on to say once word gets out people will be saying “Strange things going on at that Senior Retirement Community, Villas of Shelby, to which we will reply, we celebrate life at our community.” Father Don also invited everyone in attendance back next year for the baptism.. as God performs miracles.
After saying their “I do’s,” the couple cut the cake, the best man made a toast, and everyone enjoyed appetizers provided by Spectrum. The newlyweds danced their first dance to “Because of You” by Tony Bennett.
Felicia was moved by the entire community coming together to wish the couple well. She took the microphone, with tears in her eyes, to thank everyone for coming and to tell them she was so happy she wished she could live forever. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house.