Timing was Everything
And to beat the clock, Acee and Mitch’s friends and family rallied
PHOTOGRAPHY Craig Wolfrom
(page 1 of 2)
Weddings are inherently bittersweet. They mark progression and passing, ends and beginnings, but when one is planned with the knowledge that where one life begins another is drawing to a close, the emphasis on celebration is likewise inherently magnified. Perhaps nowhere, though, is life and death more preciously understood than in country people. They know how to rally in celebration, respond to the whimsy of life and nature, and possess the skills to nurture just about anything from not much.
So, despite the knowledge that her father might not survive to see her wedding day, the little town of Richfield rallied to make it so Allan Laudert was able to walk his daughter Acee down the aisle into the arms of Mitch Lucero without sacrificing a detail. What the community gave to Acee and Mitch was no grander than her own father had given over the years being reflected on to them.
“My father lived such an honorable life. He was a very humble man who lived within his means and enjoyed the small things in life,” Acee says. “He never needed more than he took and never took more than he needed. We have a lot to learn from his way of life.”
When Mitch Lucero asked Acee Laudert to marry him that Christmas Eve in 2007, they had known each other all their lives, growing up in the little farming town of Richfield. They didn’t start dating until after high school and they endured the twists and turns their lives would take over the next six years while they attended different colleges in Southern California. But by the time winter had set in full bore in 2007, Mitch knew it was time to make their lives parallel forever.
The evening consisted of a gathering of both their immediate families for dinner and then watching as Acee opened a gift from Mitch that sent the crowd on a scavenger hunt throughout Richfield that ended at Mitch’s parents farm. There Acee found four miniature donkeys with big red bows around their necks, donkeys she’d known were for sale and thought would be fun to have, but never dreamed would be hers.
There were times in the planning that Mitch wasn’t sure they would be hers, either.
“Two of my groomsmen helped me plan and coordinate the engagement,” recalls Mitch. “The donkeys were in a town outside of Boise and we had to transport them to Richfield. It was snowing and the wind was blowing as we were caught in a tremendous storm trying to transport the donkeys in a trailer from Boise.”
But he also had to pick up a ring in Twin Falls, the rest of the eve’s surprises.
On bended knee, and with a poem, he proposed.
“The whole day was a chaos of events trying to coordinate and set up the treasure hunt,” he says. “One of the most stressful but rewarding days of my life, but her saying yes was the best Christmas present a man could ask for.” >>>