On Saturday, Eunice Kennedy Shriver — the granddaughter of legendary philanthropist and Special Olympics founder, Eunice Kennedy — married car dealership president and CEO Michael “Mikey” Serafin Garcia in an intimate ceremony at St. Patrick’s Church in Miami.
The 26-year-old bride kept tradition alive, honoring her famous family with something borrowed (her grandmother’s Dior wedding dress) and something blue (a 1965 Lincoln Continental convertible that her grandfather, Sargent Shriver, originally gifted to her grandmother).
“My grandmother wore [the dress] at her wedding to my grandfather on May 23, 1953, and 67 years later, I wore it to marry Mikey,” Shriver told Vogue, adding that she “didn’t care” that the Dior garment had “aged into a French vanilla ivory” color and accumulated a few holes over the years.
According to Vogue, Shriver worked with luxury bridal boutique Ever After Miami to help restore the vintage dress and “create a new matching bodice and ivory veil” before the big day. Luckily, the fit was perfect, as the bride and her grandmother happened to be the same height and have the same waist size on their wedding day.
“The dress was as delicate as tissue paper,” Shriver said. “So we had to handle it with great care. I was afraid to even sit!”
For the reception, Ever After created an “after-party skirt,” according to Vogue, for the bride to change into after dinner. She paired with some comfy and chic sneakers.
Reflecting on the something blue element of her wedding — which served as her form of transportation to St. Patrick’s Church — Shriver said, “I think my grandmother wanted to make sure I got to ride in her convertible.”
The bride also opened up about planning the ceremony amid the novel coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), explaining that it was difficult to keep the guest list number down because both she and her now-husband have “large immediate families.”
“So siblings, their families, and our parents alone made for 32 guests. We were hoping things would have eased by October, but we came to the realization that [with] the way things were, it didn’t feel right to ask guests to travel to Florida or do a larger event, especially if it wasn’t going to be the way we envisioned.”
“Although technically masks and social distancing are not required in places of worship in Florida, St. Patrick’s is very safety conscious and placed distance markings down the aisle and only let our family take their masks off for the processional,” Shriver said. “Red tape every six feet down the aisle wasn’t exactly my vision, but it’s part of having a wedding in 2020. The church clergy has been at the bedside of many patients in hospitals and take the pandemic quite seriously.”
But despite the challenges caused by the pandemic, Serafin Garcia said the ceremony was “the best moment of my life.”
“It might have looked physically empty in the church with only 32 guests,” the groom — who donned a Brioni tuxedo and bow tie and Tom Ford shoes for the nuptials — told Vogue. “But the energy of that day filled the room…As I walked down the aisle with my mom and then watched Eunice walk in with her dad, it was tough to hold in my tears. She was the most beautiful bride ever. Throughout the ceremony, I made sure to soak in every moment with her until eventually walking out with a permanent smile for the rest of the evening.”