- George and Vivian “Ginger” Brown, of South Carolina, became internet sensations after they were featured in an adorable wedding-themed photo shoot.
- Their granddaughter Abigail Lydick, a photographer, wanted to treat George and Ginger to a special surprise to celebrate their diamond anniversary when they visited her in New Jersey.
- Lydick even sent a local bridal boutique a photo of her grandmother on her wedding day in 1958 so they could find a similar gown for the photo shoot.
- George and Ginger, who got married after a few months of dating, were completely surprised by the photo shoot and spent the entire time laughing and cracking jokes.
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With six decades, four children, 18 grandchildren, and 19 great-grandchildren between them, it’s clear that George and Virginia “Ginger” Brown know something about love.
Abigail Lydick, the couple’s granddaughter, told INSIDER that she wanted to make their diamond anniversary extra special when she heard they would be coming to visit her and other relatives in Allentown, New Jersey.
Since many family members couldn’t attend the couple’s anniversary party in South Carolina, where they currently live, she thought it would be fun to spend the day taking photos of them that she could share with their entire clan.
Lydick, who runs Abigail Gingerale Photography with her husband Andy Lydick, thought it would be extra fun to give the photo shoot a wedding theme.
Lydick said she worked with her favorite local vendors to get the bouquet and wedding dress for the shoot.
“I just love weddings and I knew that they would have fun doing it and that it would make them laugh and smile,” Lydick told INSIDER. “Initially I didn’t tell them all the details, I just told them to get dressed up and take pictures.”
Lydick wanted to surprise her grandma with a wedding dress that looked like the one she wore in 1958.
Lydick said she secretly sent a picture of Ginger on her wedding day to Bridal Suite Boutique in Hamilton, New Jersey, who worked to find a similar gown. A floral crown and bouquet were also donated from local vendor Ivy on Main Florals.
Wanting to make the day even more special, Lydick hired a professional hair and makeup artist.
Lydick said it was the first time Ginger, 77, ever had her makeup and hair done by a professional. George, 82, also got a fresh haircut for the photo and wore one of Andy’s suits.
Lydick said her grandparents were “totally surprised” when she revealed they were going to have a full-blown wedding photo shoot.
“My grandma was very nervous, my granddad on the other hand loved it, he was smiling and cracking jokes the whole time,” Lydick recalled.
“Once my grandma was in the dress and her hair and makeup was done, she was more comfortable during the shoot for sure.”
After snapping photos of the couple in her studio, Lydick had her grandparents walk around outside for a gorgeous series of pictures on the town’s main street and by its creek.
Lydick said getting the chance to photograph her grandparents and witness their love for each other was “so much fun” and extra special.
“Our goal with photography with anyone is to be able to have real human interaction and show off the love they have between them, which is exactly what they did,” Lydick said. “Being there to witness them cracking jokes with each other and holding each other was even more special as their granddaughter.”
George and Ginger first met in a busy diner on June 2, 1958.
A waitress had asked Ginger and her friend if she could seat two people at their table. They happened to be George and his co-worker.
They introduced themselves to each other and went on with their separate meals. Ginger didn’t think much of George until months later, when she was waiting at a red light and heard a honk. It was George, waving from the car right next to her. She waved back but they drove in different directions, yet his smile still lingered in her mind.
Ginger couldn’t recall his name, but did remember that George had said at the diner that he worked at a local radio station. After weeks of flipping through the channels, one morning she heard the familiar voice of a man named George Brown as he read the local news.
On June 6, 1959, exactly one year and four days from the day they first met, Ginger and George tied the knot. She was 18 and he was 23.
Ginger and George reconnected a month after they saw each other on the street. Ginger had been at the country fair with some friends when her brother came up to her and said he wanted to introduce her to someone. It was George, who just happened to be a former schoolmate of his.
A week later, Ginger came home from a date to find George sitting on the couch with her brother and sister-in-law. They invited her to eat at a diner with them. The rest, as they say, was history.
Lydick believes the secret to her grandparents’ successful marriage is the fact that they both “put in 100% instead of both putting in just 50%.”
“They’ve had their ups and downs, but they’re always willing to talk about it and are always willing to celebrate the good stuff while recognizing they’ve been through the hard stuff as well,” Lydick said.
“Marriage is such hard work and just because you go through something really hard doesn’t taint it. It makes you stronger, and you’re still able to celebrate all those good things.”
Lydick believes her grandparents’ very apparent love for each other is what keeps drawing people in.