Courthouse closed; KDPS officer marries couple

Dean and Carrie Lauer are married by KDPS Officer Joe Paul. (Jan. 9, 2015)

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — A Kalamazoo Public Safety officer married a couple whose wedding plans were upset due to winter weather Friday.

Dean and Carrie Lauer met six years ago and had their first date on Jan. 10 during a winter storm.

“We met through our exes. They met about three years before us and invited us over for dinner. We set up our first date and even on that day, I was thinking of postponing because we had a huge storm,” Carrie Lauer told 24 Hour News 8.

The couple wanted to get married on the same weekend as their first date anniversary, so they planned to get married at the Kalamazoo County courthouse on Friday, Jan. 9.

But a winter storm hit the area and the couple got an unexpected surprise when they arrived at the courthouse.

“There’s a white paper with writing in black marker that says the courthouse is closed and I’m like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. That’s not right.’ We were searching who can marry you, who is close, how fast is it to get ordained online because everyone was there,” Carrie Lauer said.

After finding out the courthouse was closed, Dean and Carrie Lauer, along with their family, went into the nearby lobby of the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety to regroup.

“The KDPS building is right next to them and it’s in the same building, so we just walked down there,” Dean Lauer said.

When they got there, they were asked what they needed. They said they needed someone to marry them.

Luckily, KDPS Officer Joe Paul was just starting his shift. He happens to be licensed to perform weddings.

“He came out and he’s like, ‘If you don’t want anything fancy, I’ve never done it,’ And we were like, ‘We’re good with the I dos and that’s it. We just need it today,'” the bride said.

They went to the police chief’s conference room and, in front of their family and friends, got to say their vows thanks to Officer Paul.

The couple said the day turned out better than they planned and that they are grateful to KPDS.

“We were supposed to be appreciating them that day because Friday was Officer Appreciation Day, but they actually flipped it and they did us a huge favor,” said Dean Lauer.

The couple left for their honeymoon Sunday afternoon.

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