The honorable Mayor Joe Michaelis and the entire City of Highland staff would like to congratulate Mr. and Mrs. CMSGT Joseph and Kimberly Laxson who were married at City Hall on December 11, 2020.
COVID-19 put the couple’s wedding plans in a state of flux. Unable to wed in a church and being turned away from the locked-down Madison County Courthouse, they turned to Highland to see what, if anything, our community could do to support their nuptial plans.
Under statute 750 ILCS 5/209, “a marriage may be solemnized by a judge… or by a mayor or president of a city, village, or incorporated town who is in office on the date of the solemnization.” The couple is new to town and purchased
a home in Highland after receiving an assignment at Scott Air force Base. CMSGT Laxson explained their plans and challenges in an email to the city.
“Kimmie and I had an appointment for this Friday at the Madison county courthouse; however, the new restrictions have again delayed our ability to get married. We are hopeful to have a church ceremony in Alaska, but that too is slipping further and further out of reach due to COVID measures and limitations on family and friends to attend. In order to stay in communion with my church, my priest recommended a civil union in marriage until the day we can have our church wedding ceremony. We already have our license in hand and would like to officially request the Honorable Joseph Michaelis meet with us at a safe distance, just long enough to have our marriage license signed and formalize and continue our loving home together,” he wrote.
Interim City Manager, Chris Conrad, commented on the ceremony and, the pleasure it bring city staff to help with the challenge. “In what we believe is a first for the City of Highland, the Mayor officiated a civil wedding ceremony at City Hall. We are very proud that when other more traditional wedding venues became unavailable, we were able to make it happen,” Conrad said.
Congratulations to the Laxsons!
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