There are bound to be a couple of surprises during any wedding ceremony, but few have the emotional impact of the one you’re about to see.
Shane and Rachel McNally tied the knot at St. Joseph’s Church in Carrickmacross, Ireland. The traditional ceremony went off without a hitch, but after the vows guests of the bride and groom unveiled a secret they’d been keeping for five weeks. It all started when one guest stood up from the crowd and began to sing.
Hannah O’Brien is a friend of the happy couple who also happens to be a member of Starling Blue, a four-part female vocal group. When Hannah realized that Shane and Rachel’s wedding audience would be comprised of many talented singers and musicians, she decided to put together a surprise performance that proved to be the ultimate wedding gift for her friends.
“I realized that there were going to be plenty of singers and musicians attending the wedding and saw the opportunity to do something special for the happy couple who love music,” Hannah explained.
Hannah and Starling Blue organized secret rehearsals for the weeks leading up to the big day. When their moment came, both Shane and Rachel were moved to tears by the sudden and beautiful sound of “Stand By Me.”
One by one the guest stand up and sing, slowly making their way towards the front of the church. Video captured by wedding photographer Ray Yore shows Shane wiping away tears throughout the song, while Rachel fans her face in hopes of preserving her makeup. Even Rachel’s father was involved in the serenade!
It’s impossible to watch the video without getting misty, which is why it went viral quickly after it was shared online. “It was an awesome surprise and moved everyone to tears,” Ray said, adding, “it was a beautiful tribute to the bride and groom.”
“I’ve never seen anything like this done before and I’ve been to A LOT of weddings,” Ray later joked on Facebook. We have to admit, this is one of the most unique and lovely tributes we’ve ever seen at a wedding too. This song is always an emotional favorite, but the way they surprised the happy couple is truly memorable.
Grab a tissue and watch the video for yourself below, and don’t forget to share.
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