Wedding bells ring in D.C. Superior Court on Valentine’s Day

Liam O'Brien, 22, and Alyse Carney, 21, met while students at Catholic University. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Liam O’Brien, 22, and Alyse Carney, 21, met while students at Catholic University. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Donna Waters and James Green, with a friend’s child, getting married on James’ 51st birthday. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Julie Sehnal and Tyson John Anderson were married on Feb. 14, 2015. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Ronald Holloway and Tenisha Campbell donned matching red accessories for their Valentine’s Day ceremony. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)
Liam O'Brien, 22, and Alyse Carney, 21, met while students at Catholic University. (WTOP/Dick Uliano)

WASHINGTON — Cupid’s love arrows have hit their marks this Valentine’s Day in the halls of D.C. Superior Court. Fourteen couples tied the knot Saturday in the court’s wedding chapel,  beneath a floral arch and a dangling plush red heart.

It’s the first time D.C. Superior Court’s Marriage Bureau has conducted wedding ceremonies on a Saturday, especially scheduled this Valentine’s Day.

“Easy to remember, kind of romantic,” says 39-year-old Julie Sehnal, a Fairfax County firefighter about tying the knot on Valentine’s Day with 43-year-old Tyson John Anderson, a commercial airline pilot.

“She is the kindest person that I’ve met, good-natured, good-hearted,” Anderson says about his bride.

Sehnal and Anderson we’re surrounded by family and friends on their special day.

The court’s director of Family Court, Avrom Sickel, presided at the ceremonies, two of which were scheduled each hour, until 14 couples were united.

The love of 33-year-old Tenisha Campbell and 32-year-old Ronald Holloway took years to bloom. They knew each other when they attended Frederick Douglass High School in Upper Marlboro, but Tenisha explains they were on different paths back then.

“We both worked in fast food but we were like in two different worlds, he was at McDonald’s, I was at Wendy’s,” Campbell said to the laughter of family and friends gathered inside the chapel, the walls decorated with paper red hearts.

“I knew about a year ago when she took me out, last year, for Valentine’s,” Holloway says about the time he decided that Campbell was his Ms. Right. “That’s as good as it gets, right there, I knew, ‘yeah I’m gonna have to marry her’,” he says.

Tenisha wore a below-the-knee white gown.  Her ankle-high red boots matching the color of her groom’s neck tie set off in a grey tuxedo with black piping.

Other weddings included a couple in their early 20s who met at Catholic University and a couple in their 50s, the groom, marking his 51st birthday on his wedding day.

There has been an explosion in the number of marriage license applications at D.C. Superior Court.  There were 3101 from March 2009 to March 2010; 8436 licenses were drawn from March 2013 to March 2014.

Dick Uliano

Whether anchoring the news inside the Glass-Enclosed Nerve Center or reporting from the scene in Maryland, Virginia or the District, Dick Uliano is always looking for the stories that really impact people's lives.

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