By Justin Schmidt, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
LEETON, MO (KCTV) -
Wednesday a couple in Johnson County, MO, took their wedding vows and, for this couple, there was only one place that seemed right to hold the ceremony.
It's not the most traditional wedding venue, but the McGowens said they couldn't imagine being married anywhere else.
"School is just a part of our lives," Ronnie McGowen said. "(It's) different, something we can remember."
"At first he said it was weird," Jeany (Shawver) McGowen said.
Jeany Shawver's kindergarten class at Leeton Elementary consisted of more than a dozen ring bearers and flower girls marching through the school's gym.
"She's (Jeany's) very passionate about what she does. She wanted to make sure this was a special day for her and her family, but to include her kids," said Heather Shaffer, Leeton Elementary School's principal.
Ms. Shawver - now Mrs. McGowen - said her class and the rest of the school had to be part of her big day, even if it might take everyone a few weeks to adjust to her new last name.
"I've been a teacher 28 years and I graduated from here, he (Ronnie) is a bus mechanic, I couldn't think of a better place," she said.
This is the first time anyone in the town can remember a wedding at the school and Jeany McGowen said she hopes the day is as special for her students as it is for her.
"(It's) exciting. They were really looking forward to it, just to have a part in our life. My school kids are a big part of my life," she said.
"She is so committed to her kids, education, she wants them to know how special they are in her life. This isn't just her day job, this is her life," Shaffer said.
Two classes of kindergarten through the fifth grade attended the service.
Wednesday was supposed to be the last day of class before spring break, but because of all the snow days it's been shortened to just Friday. The McGowens still plan to take their honeymoon as planned in Branson, MO.
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