Bridal couple climb mountain in tuxedo, gown

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iol news pic Mountaintop Wedding

AP

In this Aug. 11, 2012 family handout photo, Bob Ewing, 32, right, and Antonie Hodge, 30, both of Arlington, Va., pose at Seneca Rocks in W.Va. The couple made the 900-foot climb in formal wedding attire. (AP Photo/John Ewing, ho)

McLean -Photos of a U.S. bride and groom on top of a 900 foot (274-meter) sheer mountain climb in tuxedo and gown have become a hit online, with more than 500 000 views.

Even the bride's mother made the climb.

Bob Ewing proposed to Antonie Hodge Ewing in March as the couple scaled the Seneca Rocks in West Virginia, and after she said yes, she said she wanted to get married there as well.

The family pitched in. Brother Scott Ewing got himself ordained and performed the ceremony. Another brother, John Ewing, made a separate climb and photographed the ceremony with a high-powered lens.

Antonie Hodge Ewing made the climb in her mother's wedding gown. Her mother, Evangeline Hodge, made it up the rocks as well.

“I had to prove to myself I could do it,” said Evangeline Hodge, a novice climber who refused permission to print her age. “I did it for all the old people out there.”

Initially, the plan was for immediate family and some close friends to all make the climb, Antonie said. But it became unwieldy, and they had to cut most everyone from the climbing party.

“We didn't have a lot of space. It's a small mountaintop,” she said.

Family and friends who couldn't make the August 11 climb participated in a second ceremony and reception the next day.

Arthur Kearns, owner of the Seneca Rocks Climbing School, said people have occasionally gotten married at the peak, but he's not aware of anyone doing it in formal attire.

Kearns planned himself to get married at the peak 19 years ago, “but the minister tapped out ... about 200 feet (60 meters) off the ground,” apparently afraid of heights.

Kearns said he understands the appeal.

“It's probably our favorite place we've ever been,” Bob Ewing said. “I think Antonie and I have a special relationship. I'm lucky to have found someone who complements me so well.” - Sapa-AP


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