It’s no wonder with a nickname like “the concrete jungle” New York City can get a bad rep for being a tough town to crack. Lifelong New Yorkers, Terri and Jean are flipping that old narrative on its head.
Recently, the elderly duo went viral for the sweetest — and most neighborly — reason!
When the pair discovered the young couple who lived down the hall from them were getting married, they knew they wouldn’t be able to make the trip out for the destination wedding.
Instead of sending their “regrets” — they did something so much better.
It Was Friendship at First Sight
Terri and Jean became fast friends with their new neighbors Dave Steel and Elena Nicolaou.
The hilarious roommates were quick to extend an open-door invitation to their home whenever the young couple were feeling in need of a little company.
“We started visiting her and the older woman, Jean, she takes care of and lives with — they love our dog,” Nicolaou.
“Dave would sometimes cook them dinner, and we would eat together. Jean, who is 86, calls us her grandma,” Nicolaou contined. “Both have lived in the neighborhood for decades — Jean since the ’80s and Terri her whole life.”
It’s safe to say, Terri and Jean had been around the block — literally. But even in older age, the feisty ladies still kept their youthful spirit — and it was infectious.
Their “Mobility Issues” Stopped Them From Attending the Wedding
Terri and Jean were the bride-to-be’s biggest cheerleaders.
Over the course of her engagement, they were thrilled to talk about all things wedding: From the cake to the wedding dress and everything in between.
“Whoever said New Yorkers were unfriendly have never lived here!”
Even though the young couple would have loved for their neighbors to attend the festivities, Jean’s “mobility issues” ruled that plan out.
But their Plan B was so much better!
They Got Creative!
If these ladies could make it through quarantining, they could make just about anything fun indoors.
Terri and Jean decided they’d throw their own “ceremony” for the couple and with a little help from the 99 Cent store, their vision came to life.
“We dressed up, read vows, laughed throughout the ceremony and had pizza all together.”
Thankfully Nicolaou — who’s an editor at Today.com — caught the whole thing on camera.
Obviously she knows what it takes to break a good story!
Watch the Home Video:
“Our neighbors in New York threw us a wedding ceremony in their apartment since they were unable to attend ours. This happened two weeks before the official wedding. This is the RECUT version with more footage from the festivities…”
From Terri playing the father, officiant and bouquet-catcher to Jean’s acapella serenade for them to dance to, it was a perfect “wedding.”
It’s Not How Much You Spend, It’s Who You Spend Your Time With
The couple got married for real just 2 weeks later but even thought their neighbors couldn’t attend — their special rehearsal remained meaningful.
“These two women were so supportive of our relationship and we felt surrounded by pure love,” Elena shared. “There were no expectations and hurt feelings and complications like in our real wedding — just simple awesomeness.”
“The experience definitely showed me that weddings are NOT about the money you spend but the feeling behind it and the people who are present.”
Terri and Jean’s story shows there’s more than one way to celebrate the people you love. Little experiences like these are definitely the foundation the best memories are built on.